company_name = Subaru
company_type = Division of Fuji Heavy Industries
slogan = flagicon|Japan flagicon|Canada flagicon|Europe
Think. Feel. Drive.
Advanced Driving Technologyflagicon|United Kingdom flagicon|United States
It's what makes a Subaru, a Subaru.
founder = Kenji Kita
Chikuhei Nakajima (predecessor)
foundation = FHI established July 7, 1953
first Subaru car introduced 1954
location = flagicon|Japan Ota, Gunma, Japan| key_people = Ikuo Mori, President and CEO
Kenji Kita, founder of Subaru division
industry = Automobile manufacturing
num_employees = 11,998
products = Subaru automobiles, Toyota automobiles assembled under contract
revenue = loss300,000,000 (JPY) (2007)
homepage = []
nihongo|Subaru|スバル| is the automobile manufacturing division of Japanese transportation conglomerate Fuji Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. (FHI).

Subaru is known for their use of boxer engines in most of their vehicles. The company decided to utilize all wheel drive in most international markets as standard equipment in 1996. They also offer many turbocharged versions of their passenger cars, such as the Impreza WRX which is well-known in motorsports, such as rally racing. Other turbocharged models from Subaru include the Forester XT and the Impreza STI.

Fuji Heavy Industries, the parent company of Subaru, is currently in a partnership with Toyota Motor Corporation, which owns 16.5% of FHI.cite news
last = Yumiko
first = Nishitani
title = Japan's Fuji Heavy shares rally on expanded alliance with Toyota group
publisher = Thomson Financial News
language = English
date = 2008-04-11
url =
accessdate = 2008-04-12
] The company is named after the star cluster Pleiades; in Japanese the name is "Subaru", which roughly translated into English means, "to govern", "unite," or "gather together". The company logo is influenced by the star cluster. The large star in the logo represents Fuji Heavy Industries, and the five smaller stars represent the current five companies that are united under the FHI group. [ [ Origins of Subaru name] ]


FHI started out as "The Aircraft Research Laboratory" in 1917 headed by Chikuhei Nakajima. In 1931, the company was reorganized as "Nakajima Aircraft Company, Ltd" and soon became the primary manufacturer of aircraft for Japan during World War II. At the end of the Second World War Nakajima Aircraft was again reorganized, this time as "Fuji Sangyo Co, Ltd". In 1946, the company created the Fuji Rabbit motor scooter with spare aircraft parts from the war. [ [ Fuji ] ] In 1950, Fuji Sangyo was divided into 12 smaller corporations according to the Japanese Government's 1950 Corporate Credit Rearrangement Act, anti-zaibatsu legislation, but between 1953-1955, four of these corporations and a newly formed corporation "Fuji Kogyo", a scooter manufacturer; coachbuilders "Fuji Jidosha"; engine manufacturers "Omiya Fuji Kogyo"; chassis builders "Utsunomiya Sharyo" and the "Tokyo Fuji Dangyo" trading company decided to merge together to form the "Fuji Heavy Industries" known today.

Kenji Kita, the CEO of Fuji Heavy Industries at the time, wanted the new company to be involved in car manufacturing and soon began plans for building a car named the

Major shareholders

On October 5, 2005 Toyota Motor Corporation purchased 8.7% of FHI shares from General Motors who had owned 20.1% of FHI [Citation
last = Kaho
first = Shimizu
title = Toyota to buy Fuji shares in GM selloff
newspaper = The Japan Times
year = 2005
date = 2005-10-06
url =
] since 1999. GM later divested its remaining 11.4% stake, selling its shares on the open market to sever all ties with FHI. FHI previously stated that there might have been 27 million shares (3.4%) acquired before the start of trading by an unknown party on October 6, 2005, and speculation suggested that a bank or perhaps another automaker was involved. After the purchase, Toyota announced a contract with Subaru on March 13, 2006 to use the underutilized Subaru manufacturing facility in Lafayette, Indiana, and Toyota announced plans to hire up to 1,000 workers and set aside an assembly line for the Camry model, beginning in spring 2007.

Before GM's ownership, Nissan had acquired a 20% stake in 1968 during a period of government-ordered merging of the Japanese auto industry in order to improve competitiveness under the administration of Prime Minister Eisaku Sato. Nissan would utilize FHI's bus manufacturing capability and expertise for their Nissan Diesel line of buses. In turn, many Subaru vehicles, even today, use parts from the Nissan manufacturing keiretsu. The Subaru automatic transmission, known as the 4EAT, is also used in the first generation Nissan Pathfinder. Speculation has suggested that it was Subaru that introduced Renault to Nissan, when Nissan asked for assistance in all-wheel drive (AWD) technology, and when FHI might have suggested that Renault discuss their plans with Nissan, the discussions may have been a contributing factor to the currently successful Renault-Nissan alliance. Upon Nissan's acquisition by Renault, its 20% stake was sold to General Motors.

During the General Motors period, a modified Impreza was sold in the United States as the Saab 9-2X. A SUV (Subaru Tribeca / SAAB 9-6X) was also plannedCite web|url=|title=Saab 9-6X Gets the Go-ahead|accessdate=2007-07-28|] Cite web|url=|title=Subaru plans new model revolution|accessdate=2007-07-28|] but the SAAB version did not proceed.Cite web|url=|title=Saab Developing Smaller Crossover After Collapse of Subaru Alliance|accessdate=2007-07-28|]

Marketing efforts

In 1965, Malcolm Bricklin started selling franchises for motor scooters that included the Fuji Rabbit and the tiny Subaru 360. Bricklin made a deal with Subaru to introduce those cars to the United States. Malcolm and his partner, Harvey Lamm, formed Subaru of America, Inc. to sell Subaru franchises. It marked the beginning of the Japanese influx.

In the 1970s, the company moved away from small commercial vehicles and concentrated on the development of mainstream passenger car models with the Subaru Leone, and when Subaru continued in their endeavours, and introduced the Legacy in 1989, it was a sales success for the company. The Legacy was considered mainstream in its appearance and a departure from previous vehicles, which had earned a reputation of being "quirky". It was perceived by some as Subaru's attempt to compete with new luxury brands Lexus, Infiniti and Acura, as Japanese vehicles were increasing in popularity, particularly in the USA. Subaru continued their new direction with the controversially styled six-cylinder SVX (1992), and the Impreza (1993).

From 1995 to 2000, Subaru ran a series of advertisements for the newly developed Subaru Outback which starred Paul Hogan. The advertisements were intended to highlight Subaru's all wheel drive, and depicted the Outback in a number of rugged Australian locations. The tagline "the world's first sport utility wagon" was successfully used by Subaru, though the AMC Eagle had tried much the same idea, with less success in the 1980s. Some of the advertising slogans Subaru has used in the past include, "Inexpensive, and built to stay that way", "The World's Favorite Four Wheel Drive" (in the U.K.), "We're building our reputation by building a better car", "The beauty of all-wheel-drive", "Think, Feel, Drive", and currently "It's what makes a Subaru, a Subaru".

As a result of this refocused advertising campaign, Subaru products began to attract a following among the young and educated, and as a lightweight, affordable, economical SUV alternative to the likes of the Ford Bronco and Jeep Wagoneer or the exclusive Volvo. Subaru has historically been popular in US regions such as the Pacific Northwest , the North American Rocky Mountains region, and especially in New England, with relatively high resale values and owner loyalty rates in those regions. However, facing pressure from competition from the large Japanese brands, Subaru began to market only AWD cars and wagons for the American market. The Subaru Outback wagon, based on the Legacy and modified with SUV-like stance, bumpers, and roof, became one of the best selling wagons in the US during the 2000s.


Modified versions of the Impreza WRX and WRX STi have been competing successfully in rallying; drivers Colin McRae (1995), Richard Burns (2001) and Petter Solberg (2003) have won World Rally Championship drivers' titles with the Subaru World Rally Team, and Subaru took the manufacturers' title three years in a row from 1995 to 1997. Subaru's World Rally Championship cars are prepared and run by Prodrive, the highly successful British motorsport team. Several endurance records were set in the early and mid-nineties by the Subaru Legacy.

For the 1990 Formula One season, Subaru fielded the Subaru Coloni C3B. It featured a 12 cylinder boxer engine, but was not competitive because of horsepower and weight disadvantages [Subaru Performance magazine version 4.3] . With the rise of rally racing, and the Import scene in the US, the introduction of the highly anticipated Subaru Impreza WRX in 2001 was successful in bringing high performance, AWD compact cars into the sports car mainstream.


Subaru displayed a variable vane, common rail turbodiesel boxer engine at the 2007 Frankfurt International Motor Show. It is the world's first production horizontally-opposed water-cooled diesel engine. Volkswagen made only 2 air-cooled boxer prototype diesel engines that were not turbocharged, and installed one engine in a Type 1 and another in a Type 2.Cite web|url=|title=The Diesel Beetle|accessdate=2008-04-03|]

The Subaru engine was rated at convert|110|kW|PS hp|0|abbr=on and convert|350|Nm|ftlbf|abbr=on with a displacement of 2.0 liters. In March 2008, Subaru offered the Legacy wagon and the Outback wagon with the 2.0 liter turbodiesel in the EU with a 5 speed manual transmission only.Cite web|url=|title=Geneva Motor Show: Subaru diesel boxer engine|accessdate=2007-08-01|] Cite web|url= | title=Subaru's 2.0L Turbodiesel Boxer - 110kW/147hp]

In September 2008, Subaru announced that the diesel Forester and diesel Impreza will be introduced at the 2008 Paris Motor Show, with Forester sales to begin October 2008 and diesel Impreza sales to start January 2009. [ Euro-spec Impreza diesel introduction] The Forester and Impreza will have a 6 speed manual transmission only, whereas the Legacy and Outback have 5 speed manual transmissions only.

EPA fuel economy estimated is:
City Ranges
convert|32.7|mpgus|L/100 km mpgimp|abbr=on

Highway Ranges
convert|45.2|mpgus|L/100 km mpgimp|abbr=on
convert|49.0|mpgus|L/100 km mpgimp|abbr=onCite web|url=|title=Subaru Boxer Turbodiesel - Specifications - First Drive - Truck Trend|accessdate=2008-03-05|]

The fuel economy ratings listed are comparable to the Smart ForTwo.

According to the "Subaru Owners" on-line newsletter dated March 2008, Subaru is "currently making modifications to the diesel so it meets the more stringent U.S. standards. Subaru diesel models should be domestically available in two to three years."

Environmental record

Subaru claims to have implemented advanced policies which include recycling, reducing harmful emissions, educating their employees, and continuing their efforts have helped them in their environmental initiatives. The Subaru plant in Lafayette, Indiana (SIA) was the first auto assembly plant to achieve zero landfill status - nothing from its manufacturing efforts goes into a landfill. The company has also developed energy efficient hybrid vehicles as well as a recycling plan for their "end-of-life" cars.

An excerpt from the Subaru website stated "In 2006, SIA was awarded the U.S. EPA's Gold Achievement Award as a top achiever in the agency's WasteWise program to reduce waste and improve recycling." The website also stated that "It also became the first U.S. automotive assembly plant to be designated a wildlife habitat."

Subaru also offers Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle (PZEV) certified Legacy, Outback, and Forester models which are available for sale anywhere in the U.S. Subaru PZEV vehicles meet California's Super-Ultra-Low-Emission Vehicle exhaust emission standard. [ [ Subaru and the Environment ] ] All other models have been certified LEV2.

Current models

North America/Europe/Oceania/Middle East/Asia/Japan Subaru models, permanent all wheel drive with boxer engine.
* Exiga
* Forester
* Impreza
** Impreza WRX
** Impreza WRX STI
* Justy
* Legacy / Liberty
** Outback / Grand Wagon / Lancaster
* TribecaThe following models are sold in Asia and Europe. In Japan, they are in the Kei car class, with either front or all wheel drive, and a straight engine:
* Pleo
* R1
* R2
* Sambar
* Stella

An article posted by Autoblog on April 16, 2008 stated that due to the corporate investment by Toyota, all "kei cars" built by Subaru will be replaced by Daihatsu models beginning in 2010 [ [ Subaru to stop making Kei Cars - Autoblog ] ]

Concept cars

*Subaru SRD-1 Experimental design study introduced in 1990
* [ 1996 Subaru Exiga]
* [ Subaru B9 Scrambler]
* [ Subaru B11s]
* [ Subaru B5 TPH (Turbo Parallel Hybrid)]

December 4, 2007 saw an article claiming that Subaru was considering building a motorcycle, called the Subaru HS500, with a single cylinder 500 cc engine producing convert|50|hp|abbr=on. [ Subaru HS500]

Toyota-Subaru coupe

On April 10, 2008, Toyota approximately doubled its stake in FHI to 16.5%, and announced that Toyota and Subaru are working on a 2-door coupe together, to be released around 2011.cite press release
title = Fuji Heavy Industries Restructures Business Models Leveraging Alliance with Toyota and Daihatsu
publisher = Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd.
date = 2008-04-10
url =
accessdate = 2008-04-12
] The purchase was made legal on June 27, 2008.

According to an article posted by Autoblog on May 28, 2008, the coupe that Toyota and Subaru are working on together will be sold in Japan only as a Toyota, and internationally as a Subaru. [ [ Subaru RWD coupe will be sold worldwide, Toyota version only in Japan - Autoblog ] ] The Subaru version is initially being branded as an Impreza coupe, with the powertrain being described as RWD with the 2.0 liter boxer engine, and optional 2.5 turbo from the WRX STi and AWD. [ [ Subaru Impreza Coupe | Auto Express News | News | Auto Express ] ] Spy photos of a prototype testing mule were taken in the UK, heavily disguised using Legacy bodywork on a shortened frame. [ [ Uncategorized | and Winding Road ] ] . It has been suggested that the Toyota version could be a revival of the Toyota Levin/Trueno.

ee also

*Prodrive Motorsport team selected by "Subaru" to run their World Rally Team
*Subaru Tecnica International (also known as STI)
*List of Subaru engines
*List of Subaru transmissions
*Subaru EA engine series
*Subaru EF engine series
*Subaru EJ engine series


External links

* [ Fuji Heavy Industries]
* [ Subaru Global-Homepage]
* [ Subaru World Rally Team Homepage]
* [ Subaru Homepage]
* [ MY 2008 Subaru Impreza video] A video from Subaru Canada detailing specifications of the MY08 Impreza
* [ Subaru Information Research site] Detailed specifications, options, and pictures for all Subaru models from 1969 to the present
* [ Tuning Subaru] remapping Subaru cars
* [ Long Island Subaru Club] Servicing Nassau and Suffolk County
*imcdb vehicle|make=subaru

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