Subaru future product: Prepping for EVs

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Subaru will begin offering hybridized powertrains from corporate partner Toyota by mid-decade and will build battery-electric vehicles itself in a new factory in Japan in the later half of the decade. But it will rely on its current lineup of combustion-powered vehicles and one Toyota-built EV in the U.S. until then.

The launch of the 2023 Subaru Solterra electric compact crossover was put on ice this year by a stop-sale and recall issued by Toyota, which also impacted the Solterra’s sibling vehicle, the Toyota bZ4X. Subaru had plans to sell 6,000 Solterras in the U.S. in 2022, with capacity expected to increase in 2023. But the recall, involving wheels that could potentially detach, delayed Solterra deliveries for the time being and froze Subaru’s EV ambitions before they ever got a chance to get going.

Subaru will begin making its own EVs in mixed production with internal combustion vehicles at its Yajima plant in Japan in the mid-2020s. From about 2027, it will build a dedicated EV factory on the site of its Oizumi plant, which now makes engines and transmissions.

Solterra: The brand’s first mass-market EV was to arrive at U.S. dealerships in the second half of 2022, and it may still, if Toyota can solve the recall issue affecting the Solterra and bZ4X. The Solterra is built on a dedicated EV platform called the e-Subaru Global Platform, echoing Toyota’s e-Toyota New Global Architecture. Future EVs off the platform are likely, but details on those are unclear. The all-wheel-drive compact crossover would be due for a freshening in 2026.

Ascent: Subaru’s three-row large crossover will be freshened in the second half of 2022 with styling updates and the addition of the Onyx Edition Limited trim, as well as interior and safety refinements. It will be due for a redesign under Subaru’s traditional product cadence in 2024.

Outback: The Outback midsize crossover received a styling update and upgraded driver-assistance, safety and infotainment for its midcycle freshening. It is due to arrive in dealerships in the second half of 2022. A redesign of the brand’s top-selling nameplate is expected in 2025.
The Forester compact crossover added a Wilderness trim last year and is expected to be redesigned in the second half of 2023.

Crosstrek: The Crosstrek subcompact crossover was freshened in 2021 and would have been due for a redesign next year, but global supply interruptions have pushed that into at least 2024.

Legacy: The awd midsize sedan is getting freshened in the second half of this year with a new front fascia and a more powerful 260-hp turbo engine on its Sport trim. A redesign is expected in 2025.

Impreza: The redesign of the compact sedan and hatchback models has been pushed into the second half of 2023, when they will receive interior, exterior and safety upgrades.
WRX: Subaru’s performance sedan made the jump to the brand’s modular platform this year, though the WRX STI won’t join the party until the model is converted to an EV later in the decade. The WRX won’t be due for a freshening until 2026, given Subaru’s traditional product cadence.
BRZ: The brand’s sporty coupe was redesigned in 2021, featuring a new, larger naturally aspirated 2.4-liter, four-cylinder boxer engine with 228 hp and 184 pound-feet of torque that replaced the 2.0-liter, along with other exterior changes. It won’t be due for a freshening until 2026.