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2 unlikely cars help Subaru barely miss first weak month in years

Subaru’s Crosstrek and Impreza are two cars in the lineup that kept sales going forward in November. Is Subaru seeing the first signs of weakness?

2 percent was just enough growth to keep Subaru on a positive growth curve when most of their lineup saw negative sales. Subaru kept their consecutive sales streak going because of 2 unlikely cars in their lineup. The 2016 Crosstek and Impreza were the only two cars in the lineup that kept Subaru from having their first negative dip in 4 years.

The Crosstrek and Impreza that haven’t received recent makeovers, helped Subaru reach another record month in November. The Forester, Outback, WRX/STI, Legacy and BRZ all sold less than they did the same month last year. Subaru kept the momentum going with a 17 percent increase for Crosstrek and 90.2 percent for Impreza. Both cars are scheduled to get a makeover, Impreza next year and Crosstrek in 2017.

Is Subaru seeing their first shift in consumers not buying their all-wheel-drive vehicles? The reason the lineup experienced a downturn is because Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) can’t produce enough vehicles for customers. Subaru could sell a lot more vehicles if they could just get them to dealer showrooms.

Sales are robust for Subaru, including those of the Forester small SUV and Outback wagon in the U.S. and Canada. "Everywhere in the world, it is taking two and a half months to deliver vehicles," President and CEO Yasuyuki Yoshinaga says. FHI has a supply and demand problem and they are working on fixing it with the expansion of their Indiana plant in the U.S. This will be where Subaru begins producing the all-new 2017 Impreza next year and a 3-Row crossover in 2018. Subaru already produces the Outback and Legacy in the U.S.

Subaru’s problem is not getting people to buy their multi-purpose vehicles, it’s that customers have to wait to get the new 2016 Forester SUV and Outback wagon and FHI can’t keep up. This will change when Subaru has the ability to ramp up production next year. In November, Crosstrek and Impreza kept Subaru of America’s consecutive sales streak going.

Media source: Subaru of America

Image source: Subaru by way of Jorie LeMoine