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How Subaru ramps up the fun-to-drive meter on the 2016 Outback

It’s called the SKC and it’s the proving ground for Subaru vehicles like the 2016 Outback. What does Subaru do here?


The 2016 Subaru Outback is not a sports car, but Subaru builds every one of their vehicles with certain driving dynamics that push the fun-to-drive meter higher in their small SUVs and crossovers. It’s part of Subaru’s DNA to build cars that dial up driver engagement. Although Subaru did build a Forester tS with a sports suspension and superior performance abilities that was tested on the Nurburgring, most of their vehicles are built for the average consumer.

Subaru tests every one of their vehicles on what is called the SKC (Subaru Research and Development Center) track that is the proving ground for their production vehicles before they make it to the assembly line. The SKC was completed 26 years ago on November 14, 1989 when Subaru held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the occasion. It was a big deal for Subaru and the facility is used today to test every production vehicle.

It’s a high-speed circuit where Subaru has put production models through rigorous testing from the Alcyone SVX to the 24 Hours Nurburgring race models. It’s what Subaru does during the research and development process to improve the driving dynamics of every one of their all-wheel-drive vehicles.

Subaru developed the WRX and WRX STI performance cars by participating in WRC for 19 continuos years and the WRX was the first Japanese car to win the Manufacturer’s Champion title three times in a row. The new WRX STI driven by Tommi Makinen posted a time of 7 minutes 55 seconds in 2010 which was a world record for a mass-produced 4-door passenger car.

This is the DNA that’s bred into the new 2016 Subaru Outback, Forester and Crosstrek all-wheel-drive vehicles. The SKC is where Subaru tests every production car to develop vehicles that are high on the fun-to-drive meter.

Media source: Subaru Global