If you are shopping for a 2023 Subaru Forester compact SUV, 2023 Outback midsize SUV, 2023 Crosstrek subcompact SUV, and other new models, there is both good news and bad news for the 2023 model outlook.
A new Automotive News report (by subscription) from the Subaru quarterly earnings announcement said Subaru Corporation CEO Tomomi Nakamura told reporters he acknowledged the risk of a downturn in the economy but said demand for Subaru vehicles remains robust.
The bad news is the most in-demand vehicles, like the 2023 Subaru Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek, will remain hard to get. This winter, you won’t find any new 2023 models sitting on Subaru of America’s retailers’ lots.
Subaru still has about 48,000 backorders in the U.S., down from 50,000 vehicles earlier this year, and is dealing with a 10-day supply of new cars, he said. Subaru expects U.S. sales to climb 25 percent to 631,000 units this fiscal year, making the top models hard to get unless the Japanese automaker can increase production.
The report says Subaru trimmed its production plan by 30,000 vehicles to 970,000 and dialed down its wholesale target by 20,000 to 920,000 new cars.
The good news is Subaru expects a dramatic uptick in the next six months, with production returning to pre-pandemic levels of 540,000 units globally in the October-March fiscal second half. This would relieve the pent-up demand for Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek, and customers could see more new models arrive next spring.
The bad news
Subaru expects worldwide wholesale volume “to zoom ahead 45 percent in the coming six months to 521,000 vehicles, driven by a 40 percent surge in the U.S. to 353,000 cars, “ the report said. Because demand for Subaru vehicles is high, Subaru doesn’t need to offer discounts or incentives to new car customers.
More bad news
Subaru will raise prices again on its new model launches. “U.S. sales have kept very strong momentum,” Nakamura said. “This year, we raised sticker prices twice, and we will raise prices on some models at the change of the model year.”
Customers may want to buy the 2023 models before getting another price increase.
Subaru has announced pricing on the 2023 Subaru Forester, 2023 Outback, 2023 Crosstrek, 2023 Impreza, and 2023 Legacy. But look for the 2023 WRX, next-generation 2024 Crosstrek, and next-generation 2024 Impreza to jump significantly. Stay tuned.
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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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