Spurred by the upcoming release of its newest rear-wheel drive sports coupe, Subaru announced that it will boost sales over the next five years by dropping three new models and a hybrid. It’ll also likely continue its partnership with Toyota in developing new hybrid technologies.
The biggest announcement by parent-company Fuji Heavy Industries would be a roughly 42% increase in sales over fiscal year 2012 projections, from 633,000 to 900,000 units worldwide. Like many other automakers, Subaru expects many of these increases to come from an improved market standing in the U.S. and by catering to car-hungry China, where it expects to reach sales of 180,000 models per year by 2016.
As far as specific products are concerned, Subaru didn’t intimate much, other than the fact that the rear-wheel drive coupe being developed with Toyota is slated to be released in Spring 2012. On the production side, Subaru will continue to produce the Toyota Camry through the upcoming model cycle.
Subaru said that they will also release “three all-new models” of indeterminate name or detail within the next five years, as well as a hybrid model. Seeing as the automaker’s “future in environmental technologies” is likely with Toyota according to the release, don’t be surprised if Subaru’s hybrid model (or any hybrid versions of existing models) uses a modified version of Toyota’s famed Hybrid Synergy Drive.
It’s part of a plan to make Subaru more fuel efficient -- a necessary task, some argue, seeing as Korean and American competitors have blitzed the Impreza, Legacy, and Forester’s four-cylinder fuel economy numbers. The automaker is shooting for a 30 percent increase in fuel economy across the board.
Further down the product range, it looks like Subaru will sign an agreement with Japanese automaker Daihatsu (in which Toyota has a majority share) to source Subaru-branded minicars, which comes after Subaru will change production from minicars to passenger cars at its Gunma Main Plant.
Subaru’s plan is not unlike the few other five-year plans unveiled by Volkswagen and Nissan: strong market share increases buoyed by rising sales primarily in the US and China. But will it work? Let us know what you think.