Tag: Subaru

By on July 1, 2020

Everyone’s doing it, and now it seems Subaru has joined the maddening crowd of sales reporting conformity.

Not long ago, Subaru, like most every other automaker, reported its sales totals on a monthly basis. And why wouldn’t it? The previous decade saw the brand’s popularity expand massively in the U.S., with volume up not on an annual basis, but on a monthly, year-over-year basis. It pulled off the latter feat 93 consecutive times.

Alas, times change. (Read More…)

By on June 24, 2020

No, I won’t rest until Subaru returns with a true successor to the brash and youthful Brat. I’ve harped on this desire in the past when we asked what vehicle the well fleshed-out Subaru lineup lacked, and I’ll do so again today.

With Hyundai’s Santa Cruz entering production in Alabama next year and Ford working on a unibody challenger, the timing will never be more right. (Read More…)

By on June 23, 2020

2020 Subaru Forester green - Image: SubaruAfter a streak of 11 consecutive years of U.S. sales growth for Subaru, a period in which the brand doubled its market share to 4.1 percent, “We’ll start a new streak next year,” the brand’s U.S. CEO Tom Doll says of 2020.

At any other point in history, the declines reported by Subaru over the last few months would be calamitous. Yet Subaru’s year-over-year losses in 2020, a year torn to shreds by COVID-19, have not been as severe as anticipated. Moreover, bright spots have been more numerous than expected.

The company, as a result, is now planning for 2020 to end as the brand’s sixth-best on record.  (Read More…)

By on June 9, 2020

As we reported some months ago, the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek corrects a flaw that’s hitched a ride with the otherwise useful and appealing little vehicle since its inception: a lack of power.

Even with a very mild power bump for 2018, the lifted-and-cladded Impreza five-door’s 2.0-liter Boxer four-cylinder still struggled under the burden of heavy loads. Punching through deep, wet snow also revealed its shortcomings. (Read More…)

By on May 19, 2020

2019 Subaru Forester Touring

Subaru has a dual reputation. Car people know it as the company that gives us WRX and STi (and a good chunk of the BRZ/Toyota FT 86 partnership), while the rest of the world thinks of the brand as one that puts out a lot of wagon-esque crossovers that appeal to granola types, academics, and families that prioritize safety but aren’t in a Volvo tax bracket.

The Forester Touring definitely fits in to that latter stereotype. And that’s not a pejorative – it’s okay to embrace what one does best.

For the Forester, that means serving as a solid if not spectacular commuting wagon that’s road-trip ready.

(Read More…)

By on May 4, 2020

2001 Subaru Legacy Outback in Denver junkyard, RH front view - ©2020 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThe Outback version of the third generation of the Subaru Legacy wagon, built for the 2000-2004 model years, was the one that really nailed down the Outback as the Denver motor vehicle.

These things are so commonplace in Denver car graveyards that I don’t even notice them (unless I’m looking for bits for my own ’04 Outback), but today’s Junkyard Find is a top-trim-level VDC with every imaginable option, on top of its standard six-cylinder engine plus McIntosh audio system, and well worth documenting. (Read More…)

By on April 27, 2020

2005 Saab 9-2X in a Denver junkyard, LH front view - ©2020 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsWeird examples of badge engineering! Who doesn’t love them? Bad people, that’s who, and so I do my best to find such vehicles while I’m exploring car graveyards. The badge-engineering world includes Isuzus badged as Hondas, Hondas badged as Isuzus, Mitsubishis badged as Dodges, Dodges badged as Mitsubishis, Chevrolets badged as Saabs, and — of course — Subarus badged as Saabs. Here’s an example of the notorious Saabaru, found in the Subiest region of the United States: Denver, Colorado. (Read More…)

By on April 22, 2020

Subaru Legacy 2018 Logo Emblem Grille

Being relatively small for a mainstream automaker and with limited resources to keep up with evolving industry trends, Subaru latched onto auto giant Toyota for help in the electric vehicle realm. The only electrified model in Subaru’s lineup, the Crosstrek Hybrid, is a marriage of Subaru body to Toyota technology.

Far bigger things loom on the horizon for the two; namely, a pair of jointly developed electric crossovers — one of which, apparently, has a name. (Read More…)

By on April 15, 2020

2019 Subaru AScent - Image: Subaru

Known for having one of the leanest inventories in the industry, Subaru has marked yet another date date on its calendar, no doubt hoping that once production resumes in Indiana, it won’t have to turn out the lights again.

The Japanese manufacturer initially shut down its Lafayette assembly plant for the period of one week back in late March. We now know how optimistic that was. May 11th is the new return date. (Read More…)

By on April 1, 2020

Subaru Legacy 2018 Logo Emblem Grille

Subaru is joining the long list of automakers closing shop on account of the coronavirus. Japanese production is being suspended at the automaker’s main plaint in the country’s Gunma prefecture from April 11th through the first of May. It’s also idling the Oizumi engine facility as it announces plans to extend the suspension of its U.S. facility in Indiana. The plant will now be idled through April 20th.

While some of the closures are due to social distancing obligations, the rest is down to parts allocation. Subaru is heavily reliant on components manufactured in China, and it’s still not clear how things are actually going there. What is clear is that Subaru (and plenty of other manufacturers) can’t do without its robust industrial sector operating at full strength. Subaru CFO Toshiaki Okada said in February that “it’s impossible to manufacture cars without China.”  (Read More…)

By on March 17, 2020

While Toyota and Subaru are officially developing a new generation of the 86/BRZ, neither model from the current generation looks long for this world. The Toyobaru twins’ placement as an affordable sports car meant volumes were never going to be stellar but the last few years have been particularly unkind. Inside the United States (the duo’s strongest market), the Toyota half of the pair hasn’t managed to break 10,000 deliveries since 2016 — something the BRZ has never achieved. Last year, Toyota’s coupe was sitting at just 3,398 units while the Subaru only sold 2,334.

But the final nail in their coffin could be the new special edition that’s coming out of Europe. Subaru is introducing the conclusive-sounding “Final Edition” of the BRZ for Germany.  (Read More…)

By on February 27, 2020

Subaru Ascent

In an effort to build more things where they’re needed, Subaru of Indiana Automotive will spend $158 million expanding its Lafayette plant. Construction begins this summer.

The cash covers a standalone service parts facility and an add-on to the existing plant, home to the Ascent, Outback, Legacy, and Impreza. That addition will see the automaker’s only non-Japanese facility build the transmissions needed to serve a growing market.

As you’ve read here, Subaru expects to spend 2020 selling. (Read More…)

By on February 26, 2020

Image: Subaru

Turning the five-door Impreza into the lifted Crosstrek was a brilliant bit of strategy for Subaru. Sales of the jacked compact soared following its late-2012 release, rising year after year until 2018, where it managed 144,384 U.S. sales.

While the model slipped last year, Subaru is not content to leave things be. Later this year, the automaker will answer a long-standing cry from Subaru loyalists and endow the Crosstrek with moar power. (Read More…)

By on February 24, 2020

Subaru plans on delivering the goods in 2021 when it debuts the next incarnation of its flagship performance model. Rather than incrementally improving the WRX line as it has in the past, Subie looks to be kicking down the stable doors to drag as many horses as possible back to the factory for canning beneath the WRX STI’s hood.

A recent report from Forbes claims Subaru’s engineering team has targeted a minimum of 400 horsepower and 361 lb-ft of torque for the next STI. While the outlet initially referenced the motor as entirely new, it later clarified that it was technically the same 2.4-liter FA24 that currently powers the brand’s Ascent crossover — and was already assumed be adapted for use on the next WRX among those paying close attention. However, it’ll have to undergo quite a bit of work to deliver the figures being claimed.  (Read More…)

By on January 21, 2020

Crosstrek Hybrid

Like it or not, Subaru plans to make up for lost time by delving deep into the world of electrification. In a technical briefing Monday, the automaker outlined a plan to draw 40 percent of its global sales from electric or hybrid vehicles by the beginning of the next decade.

Currently, the automaker only sells the Crosstrek Hybrid, but that will change as its newly strengthened partnership with Toyota starts to bear fruit. (Read More…)

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