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Critical Supply Chain Issues Affect Subaru's Top 2 Models The Most

The 2022 Subaru Forester and Outback continue their slide backward in February because of supply chain and microchip issues. But one hot model isn’t affected.


Because of the lingering supply chain issues and microchip shortages, the 2022 Subaru Forester dropped 16.5 percent and the 2022 Outback slid 31.8 percent in February compared with February 2021. It’s a dilemma Subaru of America (SOA) is dealing with and it’s hurting their top two models the most.

The refreshed Subaru Forester had 11,255 models delivered to customers in February compared with 13,482 in February 2021. The Outback slide further with 8,637 sales compared with 12,666 in February 2021. Forester is down 7.1 percent for the year, and Outback dropped 21.6 percent in 2022.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Outback
photo credit: Schumacher Subaru

There is one model that retailers apparently could get more of with the inventory shortages. Subaru of America says its retailers delivered a record 14,476 Crosstrek models to customers in February, up 35.4 percent over February 2021 with 10,691 models sold.

The hot Crosstrek subcompact SUV was the number one selling nameplate in SOA’s all-wheel-drive lineup in February. Crosstrek passed the Forester compact SUV and the 2022 Outback midsize SUV to take the number one selling nameplate in February.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Outback
photo credit: Competition Subaru

Subaru retailers could sell a lot more of the 2022 Subaru Forester that received a refresh. Forester is still SOA’s number one selling all-wheel-drive model with 24,786 models delivered in the first two months of 2022.

The hot Crosstrek subcompact SUV passed the popular Outback midsize SUV with 19,164 models sales through the first two months, and the Crosstrek is now 4,839 models ahead of the Outback.

What’s next for the 2023 Forester and 2023 Outback?

The 2023 Subaru Forester will get few changes in the fifth year of its production cycle.

The 2023 Outback, in the fourth year of its production cycle, will get a refresh. The Outback will get a new front fascia outside (headlights, bumper, hexagon grille), unique interior upgrades with fabric changes inside, possibly a new exterior color and new wheels. The midsize SUV will also get new safety technology. New models should arrive in the late summer of 2022 but could be delayed until fall. Check out more details here.

The microchip shortages and supply chain issues continue to impact manufacturers across the automotive industry, including Subaru of America. In February, it affected the 2022 Subaru Forester and 2022 Outback more than other models in the lineup.

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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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Photo credit: Subaru USA