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Subaru is a Japanese car manufacturer. Founded in 1953, it is the automotive arm of the transportation conglomerate, Subaru Corporation.
The Subaru brand name – pronounced soo.buh.roo – came from Fuji Heavy Industries’ development of its first car, the P1, in the 1940s. Fuji Heavy Industries itself was borne out of the Nakajima Aircraft Company. Founded to focus its expertise on the production of motorcars. In a move to rename the development model P1, the CEO of Fuji Heavy Industries, Kenji Kita, landed on ‘Subaru’. Subaru is a six-star cluster in the Taurus constellation. Eventually, the P1 was renamed the Subaru 1500.
Subaru launched the 1500 in 1954, a year after it was established as a company. The Subaru 360 followed soon after. Since then, it has been well known for its ‘Boxer’ engine, an innovatively designed piece of engineering that enabled a low centre of gravity for its cars and improved safety in collisions. Conceptualised in 1965 the Boxer engine is still used in Subaru cars today.
Further cutting-edge designs saw Subaru make a name for itself in the rally world. It has a rich history in the sport includes six Championship titles along with the endorsements of iconic rally drivers Colin McRae, Richard Burns and Petter Solberg.
Having developed a broad selection of vehicles across its range, Subaru models cover family SUVs, sports cars and, as of 2019, self-charging hybrids.
Fellow car manufacturer Toyota owns a small stake in Subaru following a business collaboration in 2005. The two have collaborated on several models, including the Solterra, which was built at a Toyota factory. However, Subaru remains an independent company in its own right.
Popular Subaru models
Despite its racing reputation, it is Subaru’s family-oriented cars that often garner the largest popularity among car buyers. The Forester, a compact crossover SUV, is one of its most consistent performers on the market, while the Outback is highly popular with large car buyers.
The Subaru Forester has been in production since 1997 and is now in its fifth iteration. The Mk5 is the first of the line to offer a hybrid engine option; named the Forester e-Boxer.
The Outback has also been in production since the nineties. Not only is it currently in its sixth iteration, but a Sport version also went through three of its own generations – the latter ceasing production in 2011.
The Outback Sport is based upon what is arguably Subaru’s most iconic model: the Impreza. Produced from 1992, the Impreza is most commonly known for its rallying prowess. While the famous rally version, with its blue body, yellow details and gold alloy wheels, is perhaps its most well-known, the Impreza itself remains a popular compact family car. Its latest iteration, the Mk5, launched in 2023 as a five-door hatchback with hybrid technology.
Subaru’s accolades go back decades. While its many rallying victories speak to its impressive manufacturing standards, the broad range of wins it has achieved in more recent years is a testament to its consistency. In 2020, Subaru was voted Best Manufacturer for Safety Features in the 2020 Driver Power survey for the second year running, demonstrating its family-friendly design both inside and out. In the 2023 4x4 awards, the Outback won Best Crossover Estate, while the XV model won the same award in 2021.
Subaru frequently asked questions
Who owns Subaru?
Subaru is owned by the Japanese conglomerate Subaru Corporation, with Subaru being the company’s automotive division.
Where is Subaru from?
Subaru was established in Japan, and today its headquarters are located in the Shibuya district of Tokyo. Its original manufacturing plant was in the Gunma Prefecture of Japan, and this remains its primary production location. Four separate manufacturing plants are located here: Subaru-chō, Yajima Plant, Otakita Plant and Oizumi Plant.
Who makes Subaru?
Subaru cars are made by Subaru across its Japanese and overseas manufacturing plants. Alongside its four plants in the Gunma Prefecture of Japan, it also has a production facility in Lafayette, Indiana, in the USA.
Where is Subaru made?
Most Subaru automobiles are made in Japan. It is estimated that between 75-80% of all units are built in Japan, while the remainder are manufactured overseas.
What does STi stand for Subaru?
STi stands for Subaru Tecnica international. This is Subaru Corporation’s performance division. Founded in 1988, it oversaw Subaru’s motorsport activities and prepared vehicles for the World Rally Championship. A number of roadworthy Subaru vehicles were also developed by its performance arm, carrying the STi tag.
How much is a Subaru?
Since Subaru offers such a broad range of vehicles, from SUVs to sports cars, their price is highly dependent on what you are searching for. Plus, the age of vehicles will also impact the price. Visit https://www.arnoldclark.com/used-cars/subaru to see the latest vehicles available and price, or contact your nearest Arnold Clark Lexus dealership directly who can advise you on the models we have in stock and their prices.
Why did Subaru stop making the STi?
Despite its popularity with Subaru enthusiasts, the production of STi models ceased due to the tightening of emissions regulations – at the core of which is the corporate average fuel economy, implemented by the USA to improve fuel economy across cars and trucks.
What is Subaru VDC?
VDC stands for Vehicle Dynamics Control System. This electronic stability system designed by Subaru assists drivers in adverse driving conditions. According to Subaru, VDC “ensures greater control, stability and superior active safety standards while maximizing driver engagement.”
What is Subaru all weather package?
Subaru’s all weather package offers drivers comfort and additional safety features to ensure that their driving experience is optimised even in the most challenging of conditions. Features of the all weather package include heated front seats and side mirrors, and a windshield wiper de-icer. This package may be included on specific trim levels across the Subaru range.
What does PZEV mean for Subaru?
PZEV stands for Partial Zero Emission Vehicle. As part of its move to implement environmentally friendly policies across the business, Subaru introduced PZEV versions of its Legacy, Outback, Impreza, XV/Crosstrek and Forester models. While PZEV vehicles run on regular fuel, Subaru has marketed them as eco-friendly alternatives to hybrids and considers them to be the cleanest running petrol-powered vehicles on the market.
What does the Subaru i badge mean?
In Japan, the ‘i’ – ‘i’ for Impreza – badge featured on older Impreza models (including the WRX & STi) instead of the more widely recognised Subaru stars logo.
How do you pronounce Subaru?
Using the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) the pronunciation is suːbəru. Sounded out this is pronounced soo.buh.roo.
Where did Subaru originate?
Subaru originates from Japan. It was founded in 1953 after Fuji Heavy Industries, a manufacturing company, developed its first car. The name ‘Subaru’ originates from the Pleiades star cluster, M45, known as the ‘Seven Sisters’. One of these ‘sisters’ is said to be invisible, which is why the Subaru badge only includes six stars.
What is Subaru Symmetrical AWD?
AWD stands for ‘All Wheel Drive’. Subaru’s Symmetrical AWD differs slightly from a standard all-wheel drive. While the latter will only send power to all four wheels when the vehicle senses slippage while driving, Subaru’s Symmetrical AWD continuously sends power to all four wheels.
What is the fastest Subaru?
The fastest rallying Subaru is the 2.0-litre turbocharged 2016 Subaru WRX STI Time Attack, with 600bhp and a top speed of 180mph. However, the fastest Subaru for general production is the Subaru is the 2022 WRX STI. With 310bhp, it can hit 0-62mph in 4.5 seconds.
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