By on February 11, 2019

Subaru Legacy 2018 Logo Emblem Grille

Subaru’s sales in the United States effectively tripled in the past decade, making it the most important market for the brand by a wide margin. However, the automaker has had to expend quite a bit of energy in its home country of Japan to address recalls and regulatory scandals over the last few years.

While the duality hasn’t caused issues on a global scale, many observers wonder how long its good fortune will last. In America, Subaru is a feel-good brand that uses love as a core marketing concept to improve sales. In Japan, it has become synonymous with overworking employees lacking compensation, regulatory scandals, sudden work stoppages, and recalls. Many believe it’s only a matter of time before Subaru of America will have to contend with Japan’s issues, and evidence exists that problems are already beginning to surface in the West.

According to internal documents intercepted by Automotive News, certain U.S. Subaru retailers and company managers at starting to fret. With the next-generation Outback crossover slated to launch later this summer, some dealers worry it could be a repeat of the Ascent.

“We continue to be concerned that [Subaru] is not making the necessary investments and changes fast enough to ensure that vehicles are being produced with the quality the brand and its customers deserve,” Subaru’s U.S. National Retail Advisory Board wrote in a September 18th resolution to top management in the U.S. and Japan after last year’s rollout of the U.S.-built Ascent crossover was maligned by recalls. The board also noted it “would like to express its disappointment with the continued poor product quality and with the poor launch of the new Ascent.”

2019 Subaru Ascent Limited, Image: Subaru of America

From Automotive News:

Tom Doll, CEO of the automaker’s U.S. subsidiary, Subaru of America, acknowledged in an interview last week at the Chicago Auto Show that dealers had expressed concerns to Subaru in Japan. But Doll indicated that whatever challenges exist will be worked out, and he said he expected no delay in any product launch.

“This situation is going to correct itself,” Doll said. “A lot of it’s growing pains, right? … But we’re not concerned at all about whether or not it’s going to get fixed or not. It will get fixed. We’re hopeful that it gets fixed fairly quickly.”

However, the situation appears to be more serious than that in Japan. Subaru made big headlines in Asia after a veteran employe jumped off the roof of one of its Japanese facilities after working 105 hours of unpaid overtime in a single month. According to the family’s attorney, Kazunari Tamaki, the man’s death can be directly attributed to pressure in the workplace. The local Labor Standards Supervision Office even ruled the suicide a case of “death by overwork,” or karōshi.

Late last month, Tamaki held a press conference to describe the man’s final moments and pressure Subaru for damages. This resulted in the automaker acknowledging that some of its facilities compelled thousands of employees to work overtime without pay to solve regulatory problems and bolster production for the North American market — forgoing millions of dollars in the process.

Subaru says the suicide spurred it to survey the overtime practices of roughly 17,000 employees between July 2015 and June 2017. It learned that about 3,400 workers performed unreported “service overtime,” often claiming they did so due to management pressure not to exceed internal limits on overtime. Last March, Subaru retroactively paid those workers to the tune of $7.03 million, which some claim was insufficient.

“There is a corporate mentality that you shouldn’t claim overtime,” Tamaki explained. “There’s a deadline for the work assigned, and you have to meet that deadline at all costs. I think it’s really the company trying to make a bigger profit by controlling costs.”

Back in the United States, dealers remain concerned that Japanese problems will spill over. “Unfortunately, customers continue to have many issues with their Subarus, and the brand continues to slip in IQS and other industry metrics related to product quality,” the retail board wrote in September. “This is unacceptable and contradictory to what [Subaru] continues to tell the [board] and retailers about improvements being made thru quality initiatives.”

Production volume has also become an issue. One U.S. supplier to Subaru’s vehicle assembly plant in Lafayette, Indiana, already confessed to having trouble keeping its quota as the redesigned Outback enters pre-production. The supplier, Fukai Toyotetsu Indiana Corp., had 222 workers quit from its plant in Jamestown between May and September, losing 74 more between early December and early January. This left the stamping supplier short staffed and dependent upon 12-hour shifts to make up the difference.

None of this will bankrupt Subaru overnight. While the company has adjusted its earnings slightly to account for work stoppages and supply issues, it doesn’t look to be anywhere near death’s door. The automaker will probably continue growing until logistics becomes an insurmountable problem. All Subaru seems to have done is run itself to exhaustion without taking a break to reassess the situation — a mistake we hope it doesn’t repeat.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

Recommended

84 Comments on “Subaru’s Sales Success Comes With a Big Side of Trouble...”


  • avatar
    R Henry

    ““This situation is going to correct itself”

    Didn’t Rick Waggoner say that once? Or was it a dozen times in 2006?

  • avatar
    cimarron typeR

    Sad story. On the lighter side ,no driving dogs have filed any lawsuits.

  • avatar
    kushman1

    maybe buy some gm plants – it would help their marketing through good will branding and help with supply. Rear hatched models of theirs keep going up in sales with no ceiling but to do more factories.

  • avatar
    ToddAtlasF1

    So about what one would expect of a company that caters to progressives.

    • 0 avatar
      R Henry

      …I come here to escape politics. Please don’t ruin it….!

      • 0 avatar

        You picked the wrong industry to avoid politics. That train left the station sometime before the first Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards were enacted, probably before GM’s president became Eisenhower’s Sec. of Defense. I’ve yet to attend a major auto show where there weren’t politicians vying for photo ops. At the Chicago show, Mayor Rahm Emmanuel was taking credit for Ford’s billion dollar investment in their Chicago facilities.

        I do find it interesting how some Japanese and Korean car companies are oh so politically correct in how they market cars in the U.S. but do business as usual in their domestic markets.

        • 0 avatar
          R Henry

          Perhaps, but how does disparaging progressives without provocation fit with your point?

        • 0 avatar
          EGSE

          “I do find it interesting how some Japanese and Korean car companies are oh so politically correct in how they market cars in the U.S. but do business as usual in their domestic markets.”

          I don’t…it is to be expected. They tailor their marketing to the markets they are selling into.

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        Subaru is driven by snowflake types

        • 0 avatar
          EGSE

          “Subaru is driven by snowflake types”

          Yeah, like my friend who is on her second Subaru, who was one of the organizers of the Tea Party movement in Maryland.

          Or her rock-ribbed Republican husband who has had four of them in the decades I’ve known him.

          Those snowflakes….

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I concur with R Henry.

    • 0 avatar
      Fordson

      Yeah, I’m sure that because of their marketing image, Subaru management decided to engage in this kind of employment practice and product launch screwups.

      Way to connect the dots. Or, maybe one thing has nothing to do with the other.

      • 0 avatar
        civicjohn

        @Fordson,

        Good retort. It appears you have quite a rich background with respect to Japanese C-suite culture.

        Maybe the dots connect and you are ill-informed? I’m assuming you’ve never heard of an “office with a window”? The marketing image is real in the US and is typically very difficult to convey directly to Japanese management. Subaru has had a good run and has a demographic market they cater to. However, I would guess that American management is trying their best to tell Corporate that “hello, we have a problem”. Having been in exactly the same position in a different product space, I can certainly see the difficulty that American management might have.

    • 0 avatar
      vehic1

      Most of the folks in the nursing homes are no longer driving.

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      Dude, you ran a garage in college town and come in here to complain about who you call “progressives”. Find an American Legion in the Tidewater area to find more guys like you to kvetch with(and cheap beer). Colonial took care of my Escape.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    What – no calls to unionize? At TSLA, we can blame that slave-driving moron Musk, but here, it’s just a Japanese Subaru culture thing – you wouldn’t understand.

    Also – “solving quality problems quickly” is an oxymoron.

    • 0 avatar
      ToddAtlasF1

      Subaru is unionized in Japan. You are under the false impression that being in a union is good for anything other than having to support another group of parasitic bureaucrats.

      • 0 avatar
        Fordson

        And maybe you are under the false impression that everything in life is political, one union is the same as any other union and there are monsters under your bed.

        It’s late enough in the day to switch to decaf, I think.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        @ToddAtlasF1: I’m no fan of unions; I was just expecting more of an outcry.

        But I’ll ask this question: If Subaru is unionized in Japan, why are people working overtime for free?

        • 0 avatar
          conundrum

          Because Subaru brings in hundreds of temporary foreign workers to Gunma Japan, and pays them bug*er all. Just like many other Japanese corporations, and unions aren’t the same thing at all in Japan as in the Anglophone west.

          Read this and you’ll get an idea what’s going on:

          https://www.reuters.com/article/us-japan-subaru-specialreport-idUSKCN0Q21GS20150729

          Here’s a sample: “What Subaru does not tout is that its boom is made possible in part by asylum seekers and other cheap foreign laborers from Asia and Africa.”

          and

          “At Subaru, some foreign workers earn about half the wage of their Japanese equivalents on the production line. At the automaker’s suppliers, workers are often employed through brokers who charge up to a third of the workers’ wages. From countries including Bangladesh, Nepal, Mali and China, these foreign laborers are building many of the parts for the Forester, including its leather seats, often in grueling conditions.”

          It’s not pretty.

          • 0 avatar
            SCE to AUX

            @conundrum: Thanks for the article – what a sad tale. You’ve answered my question.

            The Subaru demographic in the US would be shocked.

        • 0 avatar
          geozinger

          Japanese unions are pretty toothless, more so than the UAW these days. They’re the Potemkin facades of unions.

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        No, the Japanese unions are company unions. It may have been too late but the UAW finally figured out that it had to get along to have a a future to go along to. This is not directed at you personally. One part of the bailout is that the UAW took over its own health-care benefits under VEBA and the job banks have been gone for a decade.

        • 0 avatar
          geozinger

          Let’s put it this way:

          Korean autoworker unions > German autoworker unions > UAW > Japanese autoworker unions.

          Company union, yes. Toothless, yes.

          The concessions the UAW made in 2008 were probably the best and worst thing they could have done at the same time. They gave up power to retain power. However, I still think that the union’s time is limited…

  • avatar
    gtem

    FWIW my friend has a Lafayette built Outback, his one complaint is the rear hatch has some very noticeable misalignment, common complaint on the forums, and dealers aren’t particularly forthcoming with solutions. Engineering Explained did a comparison of a Model 3 Tesla and a Crosstrek, to help people visualize alignment/quality issues with the Model 3, with the Crosstrek as a reference (it had good fit and finish all around).

  • avatar
    gasser

    Corporate seeks to gain a bigger slice of the pie at the expense of workers. Free overtime work??????? Where did this come from? As the U.S. skirts with full employment, the old rules of management, like mandatory overtime, poor safety conditions and insufferable bosses won’t fly anymore. Respect and pay workers fairly and you have a shot at keeping a trained dedicated staff to turn out your product.

    • 0 avatar
      jatz

      “you have a shot at keeping a trained dedicated staff to turn out your product”

      Not if your people stopped making babies and you’re way too xenophobic to replace them with foreigners.

      It’s gouge time now in Japan before China completely ingests their markets.

      • 0 avatar
        gtem

        Seems like Japan’s population loss+ not importing millions of low skill immigrants is working out just fine in conjunction with the rise of automation en masse. There’s also cities in Japan where young couples can basically get houses for free. Sounds like a good place to be a young person to me!

        • 0 avatar
          jatz

          I’m too whacked by the flu to pursue this right now. Just think about why the J-gov and its captive banks feel the need to give young people free stuff.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            The housing is cheap because demand has collapsed with a shrinking population. Not bringing in people from primitive countries is the only responsible action if you’re a climate change cultist, and the Japanese have slurped down the Kool-Aid. The globalists flood western countries with people who previously didn’t have significant carbon footprints because they know they’re lying.

  • avatar
    jatz

    Hey! At least they have something to karoshi about!

  • avatar
    Whatnext

    I never understood the love for Subaru. Mediocre cars with mediocre mileage and so-so reliability. And it’s not like their styling sets the wrold on fire either. Is AWD really worth putting up with all that?

    • 0 avatar
      A Scientist

      I have family in western Montana, and I completely understand why everyone and their brother has a Subaru up there. However, I live in the South, and for the life of me I can’t figure out why so many people drive them down here. And in my experience, without a doubt, the worst, and I mean the WORST drivers in my town are always driving Subarus.

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        Here in Texas my Outback handles our torrential downpours like a pro. Won’t go without AWD again. Only saw one bout of snow in the last 6 years, so can’t address that relevance.

      • 0 avatar
        macmcmacmac

        If there’s a boy racer within earshot it’s some ass in a Subaru or German car. Complete with blinding HID “upgrade” and ear splitting Hella Supertones.

    • 0 avatar
      sckid213

      As an older millennial, I think a few things:

      1) It’s not a Honda or Toyota (what the parents drove), but it’s still Japanese. 99% of my peers do not know that Toyota has any relationship with Subaru. In fact I still think the Ascent should have been a straight up badge-engineered Highlander. I think it would have sold just as well if not better.

      2) It’s mostly millennial WOMEN leading the charge for these things. Most millennial men have some awareness of the WRX and STi, so the brand gets a bit of “cool” points (I guess the BRZ helps too? Maybe?). So the wife sees a dog puking out rainbows and hearts in the latest Subie commercial, proclaims her need to have a Subaru, the husband rolls his eyes at the commercial but thinks of the STi, and goes along with the purchase.

      3) The “gotta have AWD” thing helps. Even here in sunny Los Angeles, many are CONVINCED they need AWD.

      • 0 avatar

        You are right. I do not live in LA but live in SF Bay area which is not much different. And I have Fusion AWD. I cannot explain why. Just have it and that’s it. My son lives in Bay area too and drives Subaru Forester AWD but he has passion for outdoors.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      AWD means you won’t die when it rains or snows.

      Its meteoric rise parallels the increase in health care costs, which are directly related to Americans’ desire to live forever at *any* cost.

      • 0 avatar
        jatz

        “Americans’ desire to live forever at *any* cost.”

        Well, certainly not at the cost of exercise or dieting.

      • 0 avatar

        Well, Europeans want to die early. Otherwise universal health care does not make sense and Government agrees apparently. Japanese prime minister made an appeal to senior citizens to die already because social security is not sustainable. True he apologized later after outcry in world press.

        • 0 avatar
          Arthur Dailey

          @Inside, that comment wins the prize for out of context as the USA is 31st in life expectancy. Behind most European nations and other nations with universal healthcare.

      • 0 avatar
        ttacgreg

        Not sure if that first sentence is sarcasm or not. Assuming it is not. my retort would be, that I drove Vail Pass five days a week to a job, in by far, the snowiest winter I have ever experienced in my 40 years up here in a . . . . Chevy Citation will all season tires. Never got stuck, never left the road out of control. Proper driving, including knowing one’s own limits and one’s vehicle limits is what keeps you from dying.

        Subies are ubiquitous up here. That last time I checked Crosstreks pretty much don’t depreciate. Two years ago a friend was shopping for Crosstreks, the dealer had a two year old high level trim one with some 20-30k miles and was asking more for it than a new base model.

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      The old Volvo “Brick” was on its last legs. Worse yet, Volvo stopped making those semi-luxury “Bricks” cars for those who don’t like cars that much. Subaru started advertising “SAFETY!!!!” and “Asymmetrical All-Wheel Drive!!”, and we’ll help return newts to to the damp, damp forest! The Volvo was given to the college-bound kid who festooned it with Phish stickers and the new Subaru owners found it easy to park at Costco.

    • 0 avatar
      jfb43

      The image associated with their customers alone would keep me away from everything except, possibly, perhaps, maybe an STI (why do they name their performance car after sexually transmitted infections?).

      But totally agree. Everything is subpar or mediocre about Subaru, except they sell “FEEL-GOOD”. It is a big hit for those who feel guilty about their colonial whiteness wreaking havoc on our planet.

      • 0 avatar
        redapple

        What next and JFB:

        Why folks like Subarus: (pay attention)
        1- Unsurpassed crashworthiness.
        2- Unsurpassed Resale.
        3- Not my neighbors (and 400 other people in the neighborhood) Honda or Toyota.
        4- Best AWD system Period !!! (outside of LandRover)
        5- Poor MPG is Old news. Fake news. My 18 Forester has averaged 31.5MPG. since new. 13000 miles. This is 5 MPG higher than my 2012 equinox over 50000. SAME DUTY CYCLE.

        • 0 avatar
          ToddAtlasF1

          1. Which new cars are dangerous exactly? https://www.nhtsa.gov/ratings?cmpid=TSBSNF0117&gclid=CLT75b23tuACFcOexQIdG68AcQ&gclsrc=ds – The Forester tied with the RAV4 and both were one star behind the CR-V
          2. Maybe. There’s one born every minute.
          3. I’m not sure where you live. Where I’ve been, the people who drive them are herd animals
          4. They have the worst 4WD system in terms of robustness and durability. They overcharge for their feeble half-shafts and intentionally and unnecessarily un-rebuildable driveshafts. They also avoid standardization to deter aftermarket suppliers. Finally, the 4WD system you think you’re bragging about was only on manual transmission cars.
          5. Great. They traded the planetary automatic transmissions that were the only impressively durable thing they made for savings of cheap gasoline. Enjoy the fools’ tax on the transmission replacement horizon.
          6. Rear brakes on Subarus are short lived and need to be replaced with Subaru parts when they wear out. That’s because Subaru publishes bad specs to avoid anyone offering brake rotors that clear their hubs. They charge $85 a rotor, and the quality gets worse constantly. I didn’t know about their production issues, but I’ve long assumed that Subaru engineers were attracted to their profession by a desire to develop rally cars for Petter Solberg, not because they wanted to make station wagons for collie-fondlers. They seem to actively hate their customers based on the junk they market to people who don’t understand the physical world.

    • 0 avatar
      Whatnext

      Yeah, but with the CUV/SUV explosion there are lots of vehicles available with AWD. Why put up with Subaru?

  • avatar
    slavuta

    Subaru: love to death

  • avatar
    vehic1

    Subaru’s US sales success within the last decade, broken down yearly:
    2011 – gained about 3,000
    2012 – gained about 70,000
    2013 – gained about 88,000
    2014 – gained about 89,000
    2015 – gained about 89,000
    2016 – gained about 33,000
    2017 – gained about 32,000
    2018 – gained about 33,000
    source: carsalesbase Most of the mileage has already been gotten out of the love and dogs campaign, it seems.

  • avatar
    Verbal

    I see a fair number of independent repair shops that bill themselves as “Subaru head gasket specialists.” It is a cottage industry.

    • 0 avatar

      A friend of my fathers who owned an auto machine shop told me about 8 years ago that Subaru head gaskets put his kids thru college.

    • 0 avatar
      ToddAtlasF1

      I ran a shop until November 2018. Subarus make up for the reliability of all the other strong selling Japanese cars. Being in a college town, they were our cash cows. I can’t overstate how unlikely it is that I would own a Subaru under any circumstance. The owner of the shop swore by them. They bought his Hellcat, which is another example of a product of a car company to be avoided.

      • 0 avatar
        redapple

        FAKE NEWS. GASKET ISSUE NOT PRESENT IN CARS AFTER 2014.

        • 0 avatar
          ToddAtlasF1

          Wrong. Had one customer with over 100K miles on a 2015, and her car’s leaks were well on their way to necessitating head gaskets. Subaru is still putting stop-leak in the coolant of their new cars today, so they know they haven’t fixed anything. The newer ones also still eat A/F ratio/S1 O2 sensors due to coolant in their exhausts. You are spreading a lie.

          • 0 avatar

            I wondered.

            First the head gaskets were fixed for the 2003 models, then it was 2011, then 2013. And it seems it’s always the 2.5 NA engines.

            This just in: HEAD GASKETS ARE NOT A MAINTENANCE ITEM. But apparently Subaru sees differently.

            Stop leaking coolant on my leg and telling me you “LOVE” me.

  • avatar
    indi500fan

    Interesting comments about Fukai Toyotetsu.
    It’s a 2014 greenfield startup in rural western Indiana just a few miles down the interstate from where I live…they supply body stampings to Subie in Lafayette.
    Don’t know anyone who works there, and haven’t seen anything in local media but obviously there’s big trouble with that kind of employee turnover.

  • avatar
    nationalminer84

    gee no one wants to work in a stamping plant for $12-15 no benefits? who would have thought…..

    • 0 avatar
      bullnuke

      There’s a bunch of folks at a large Honda/Tesla body part stamping plant near me in Western, Ohio, making $12 to $15 with average benefits. The plant has been there for more than 20 years and the turnover is rather low. Probably has a lot more to do with Fukai Toyotetsu management rather than the job or rate of employee compensation/benefits. But there is also another rather large Honda supplier closer to me in a small town of 13k residents that pays at similar rates with similar benefits but has a fairly high rate of employee turnover – this is mostly due to illegal drug issues (whiz-quiz failures, shooting up in the restrooms) and not particularly management issues. Hard to speculate what the issues might be for this Subaru supplier.

  • avatar
    Mike-NB2

    I know that this opinion won’t be popular, but around here in Atlantic Canada Subaru seems to be taking sales from Toyota – and I don’t mean that in a good way. Toyotas (at least the Corolla, Camry and RAV4) are vehicles for people who have no interest at all in driving. It’s an appliance. The average age of Toyota drivers around here has to be high 60s. Subaru isn’t far behind. I’m no spring chicken but I wouldn’t consider a Toyota or Subaru simply because I don’t want to be part of that demograhic. And Subaru used to build interesting cars. Toyota did too.

  • avatar
    geozinger

    The beatings will continue until morale improves…

    I posted this somewhere else but I’ll do it again… Why do we in the US believe the Japanese manufacturers walk on water when they’re no better actors than domestic or other foreign manufacturers?

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      Mssr. Geozinger,
      Toyota and Honda routinely run more quality controls tests on the parts that go into their vehicles. I used to set up quality control tests at automotive parts plants; been there, done that; burned the golf shirts. In a factory that supplies both the Japanese and the Big 3. Japanese fanbois would have conniptions over that fact. The Japanese routinely run more and more thorough qualit control parts inspections. In company specific plants, again the Japanese run more and more thorough tests than the Big 3.

  • avatar
    gottacook

    When Subaru was selling a full range of interesting cars in 1993-94,* it was on the verge of having to pull out of the U.S. market, as is well known. In the 25 years since then, Subaru of America figured out how to achieve its current years-long sales growth. Unfortunately that required offering cars that gradually became less interesting (particularly in the last 9-10 years). Isn’t it as simple as that?

    *SVX 6-cylinder, Legacy (with available turbo and, on wagons, adjustable air suspension), and Impreza, all with AWD optional. Also the old Loyale (ex-DL/GL) and the Justy, both with optional 4WD.

    • 0 avatar
      riggodeezil

      Sounds about right— from “quirky” to mainstream while capitalizing on AWD and offering emerging buyers a Japanese alternative to the Toyota they were hauled to soccer games in by Ma and Pa. A yellow/gray two-toned Baja? Very distinctive if somewhat “unnecessary”. I used to admire them for rolling out offbeat crap like that. Now they look pretty much like everything else and AWD is hardly a novelty anymore.

  • avatar
    tomLU86

    Here’s the thing:

    The Asians work long hours for less money (this includes their white-collar/salary employees).

    So they can get more done.

    American workers don’t work OT for free. They don’t commit suicide because GM or Ford or FCA didn’t pay them.

    Duty. Honor. Corporation. Country. This is Japan.

    SO, the American consumer benefits.

    And on TTAC, people comment about how reliable their Toyotas are, how much the ‘love’ their Subarus, and how stupid GM and Ford are.

    It’s great to shop at Walmart or your Subaru dealer or even your GM dealer, and buy get great deals on products made with low-paid or slave labor–if YOU have a decent job.

    If you’re a Walmart greeter or waitress, you can’t afford the great deals.

    There is not free lunch.

    Subaru=slavedriver employer that “loves” customer.

    And I like some Subaru products.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Just as GM is largely becoming a company based in the USA that depends on selling vehicles in China, Subaru is largely a company based in Japan that depends on selling cars in the USA.

    At what point will the tail start wagging the dog (or vice versa)?

  • avatar
    NiceCar

    The article is a little odd, going back and forth between the Japanese work culture problems and the rollout/quality problems in the US. The link isn’t clear.

  • avatar
    R Henry

    The US success of the Subaru brand clearly illustrates the value to high quality marketing.

    Let’s be honest, Subies are not objectively better than any its rivals–some would argue they are inferior. Yet Subie has one of the most loyal customer bases in the industry. The funniest thing is how Subies are especially attractive to the environmentalist/outdoorsy types on both coast, while generally offering lower fuel economy and a complete lack of hybrid or electric drive.

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      I’ll argue Subaru has been offering more value-for-money than a lot of competitors, the interior in the Outback feels much richer than the $27k pricetag would suggest for an AWD base/mid trim car, the strong safety results, emphasis on good sightlines. The appeal goes deeper than marketing, although their marketing people deserve credit for all the feel-good stuff and especially talking about the longevity of their vehicles.

  • avatar
    John Scott

    as much as I enjoy my 2017 Forester – only car with every “want” on my list – manual transmission, AWD, sunroof, heated seats – that fit my price range, it’ll probably be my last Subaru unless they go back to manuals. Which is very unlikely.

  • avatar
    singlespeeds

    while I like the Subaru I lease now I will not be replacing it with another Subaru when the current lease is up because of the problems with Subaru Credit which is Chase Bank. if Subaru replaces Chase with another lender for in house leasing then I would lease with Subaru again.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • Jeff S: I had 2 cars that rusted–one on the bottom of the fire wall and another where the unibody was attached...
  • WildcatMatt: Dad picked up a used ’68 Beetle to weather OPEC II, one with the “AutoStick” so Mom...
  • salmonmigration: Is this a time traveler from the distant past?? The first-gen Tacoma that had that issue stopped...
  • jh26036: You miss the best part then, putting quality miles on a car you just bought. These big sedans eat up miles...
  • WildcatMatt: See! I knew Taco Bell had to be involved!

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributors

  • Timothy Cain, Canada
  • Matthew Guy, Canada
  • Ronnie Schreiber, United States
  • Bozi Tatarevic, United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States
  • Mark Baruth, United States
  • Moderators

  • Adam Tonge, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States