Taking Names: That's 'Mr.' Subaru Corporation, to You
Subaru’s parent company plans to change its name from Fuji Heavy Industries to, simply, Subaru Corporation. Why? Because of course.
In an effort to leverage the recognition of its Subaru brand, the transportation giant says the move away from its long-winded company name will help grow Subaru as a distinctive global presence in the automotive and aerospace industries.
Fuji Heavy Industries currently has four divisions: Automobile, Aerospace, Industrial Power Products, and Eco Technology.
Ahead of the name change, FHI said it will integrate its Industrial Products and Automobile divisions starting in October of this year. The merge will combine the expertise of both divisions to further improve its Subaru vehicles. Subaru is FHI’s main business, after all, so it’s critical they invest deeply in that division.
Earlier this year, we learned Subaru will follow industry trends by introducing a modular chassis. Like Volkswagen’s plan for its MQB architecture, the Subaru Global Platform will underpin most, if not all, future models. We’ll see it first on the 2017 Impreza. The new, combined might of FHI’s Industrial Products and Automobile divisions will make the most of this switch to a Global Platform.
This name change will probably be transparent for the average consumer. Dealership signage and naming likely won’t change, so the socks n’ sandals crowd will continue to be able to get their Pleiades fix at their local Subaru dealer.
FHI adopted the Exploding Galaxy as their corporate logo in 2003, so these changes make sense. The name change, which requires shareholder approval, is expected to take effect in April 2017.
Sure, sounds like a good idea now, but wait for the carnage that'll ensue as soon as someone puts an STI label on a backhoe. "I can make it up that incline! STI, baby!" "I can dig right around that gas line. Subbie precision!" And what'll happen when someone puts a rally pig sticker on a rocket?
So here we go: There is Fuji-Xerox which makes low to mid level commercial presses (printers) for Xerox Corporation. Will it be called Subaru-Xerox? Fuji cameras become Subaru cameras. Fuji chemical - now you can buy Subaru films for analogue photography (which some say has higher resolution and better quality than digital. And so on. How about renaming Renault to Nissan to improve quality perception of French made cars? Or even better - to rename Nissan to Infinity to improve perception of crappy Nissan cars. Hell, why not to rename GM to Chevrolet Corporation? Ford did it.
It's always worrisome when a company start dicking around with trivialities, instead of simply focusing on building better products more efficiently. It's often an early sign the C-suite has lost touch with what made the company a success in the first place. Or is listening to the interns that are giving them BJs. Or something. Very rarely a sign of anything positive.
Isn't there a Mr Fuji in the board to veto this untraditional madness*? And how is a new modular platform ready to be deployed next year news first now? *I don't really care that much myself; will there be any change in the real world?