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How Subaru Finished The Year And A Surprise Model Is Now On Top

Subaru keeps the momentum going with its Crosstrek, Outback, and Ascent getting impressive sales increases. See which model is a surprise with its best year ever.

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It was a challenging year for Subaru of America. Still, the Camden, N.J. automaker finished December up eleven percent despite the ongoing supply chain challenges that have plagued them all year. Thanks to impressive sales from the 2023 Outback, Crosstrek, Ascent, and Forester, Subaru of America (SOA) finished 2022 down only 4.7 percent.

SOA reported they delivered 556,581 vehicles to U.S. customers compared with 583,810 in 2022. SOA sold 56,760 vehicles to customers in December, up 11.0 percent compared with 51,146 models sold in December 2021. But the Subaru all-wheel-drive lineup is shaken up to finish the year.

2023 Subaru Crosstrek
photo credit: Schumacher Subaru

The Crosstrek is the surprise model

The Subaru Crosstrek subcompact SUV was the surprise model in 2022. SOA delivered a record 155,142 Crosstreks to customers in 2022 compared with 127,466 in 2021. The hot Crosstrek finished the year up 21.7 percent, leading all Subaru models in total sales.

The 2023 Crosstrek had another strong month in December, with 13,491 models delivered to customers compared with 9,494 in December 2021, an increase of 42.1 percent leading all models in Subaru of America’s lineup.

2023 Subaru Outback

The refreshed 2023 Subaru Outback midsize SUV was the sales leader in December, with 14,797 SUVs delivered to customers compared with 12,643 in December 2021, up 17.0 percent.

The Outback was the second best-selling model in the lineup, with 147,262 models sold for the year compared with 154,623 in 2021. Outback finished the year down 4.8 percent.

2023 Subaru Forester

The Subaru Forester compact SUV was down 2.9 percent in December but finished strong with 13,526 compact SUVs delivered to customers compared with 13,930 in December 2021.

Forester finished 2022 in third place in the lineup with 114,096 sales. Forester was down 26.3 percent for the year compared with 154,723 models sold in 2021.

The Subaru Ascent 3-Row SUV was up 6.2 percent for the year and is only one of two SUVs up to finish the year. Ascent saw a percentage of sales increase of 14.7 percent in December. Ascent had 6,980 sales in December compared with 6,088 in December 2021. Ascent finished in fourth place in the lineup with 63,704 sales for the year.

The Impreza falls further behind, ahead of the next-generation 2024 model launch. SOA reports 2,495 Impreza compact car sales compared with 4,156 in December 2021. Impreza is down 40.0 percent in December and dropped 11.3 percent for the year. Impreza finishes in fifth place overall in the lineup.

The refreshed Subaru Legacy is down just 0.7 percent for the year, with a 22.9 percent increase in new model sales in December. SOA reports 2,125 sales in December compared with 1,729 in December 2021. The Legacy sedan finished in sixth place in the lineup for the year.

2023 Subaru Solterra

SOA reported the all-new 2023 Subaru Solterra electric compact SUV, in its first full month of sales, sold 825 EVs to U.S. customers. The Solterra had 919 total model sales in 2022 after arriving in November.

The performance models saw mixed results. The WRX performance-tuned sedan increased 7.8 percent, with 2,196 sports cars delivered to customers in December compared with 2,037 in December 2021. WRX finished seventh in the lineup with 18,662 performance sedans delivered to customers compared with 27,141 in December 2021, down 31.2 percent for the year.

The rear-drive BRZ sports coupe dropped 69.6 percent in December, with 325 model sales. The BRZ sports coupe finished the year up 44.2 percent, with 3,345 models delivered to U.S. customers.

Subaru of America finished 2022 with five consecutive months of positive sales. “Thanks to our stellar retailers, we had a strong finish to 2022,” said Jeff Walters, Senior Vice President of Sales. “In 2023, our customers can look forward to an exciting lineup of Subaru vehicles, including the all-new Impreza arriving later this year.”

Subaru of America nearly climbed out of the red in 2022, finishing the year down only 4.7 percent. The 2023 Subaru Crosstrek is the surprise model and is now the leader in the all-wheel-drive lineup for the first time.

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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: Schumacher Subaru

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PacoMartin (not verified)    January 6, 2023 - 12:12AM

Subaru YoY for end of 2022 looks fanastic compared to other Japanese automakers.
-4.7% Subaru
-9.6% Toyota Motors N.A.
-11.4% Mazda N.A.
-15.9% Mitsubishi Motors
-25.4% Nissan Group
-32.9% American Honda