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Is It Time To Panic? New Subaru Model Sales Drop Again

Sales of the 2022 Subaru Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek were dismal in November, with a 35 percent drop. Is it time for Subaru of America to panic?

New 2022 Subaru Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek model sales dropped again in November, guaranteeing Subaru of America will finish 2021 with its second straight year of sales declines. It's the first time in twenty-six years it has happened. Subaru reported 33,045 new vehicle sales in November, a 34.5 percent drop from November 2020. Subaru is not alone; Toyota, Honda, Hyundai, and Kia sales fall in November for the fourth straight month.

Subaru sales dropped 30.0 percent in September and 40.1 percent in October. It's not because Subaru vehicles are not in demand, but because of the ongoing global microchip shortages that have hit the Camden, N.J. automaker hard.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback

Tom Doll, President and CEO, Subaru of America, said in a press release today, "Like other automakers, the global semiconductor chip shortage has impacted our vehicle production, but our top priority is meeting the demand for Subaru vehicles."

"Demand for Subaru remains high," said Jeff Walters, Senior Vice President of Sales Subaru of America. And he's right. If it weren't for the severe inventory shortage, Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek sales could be hitting new records. The Forester, Crosstrek, and Outback were ranked three of the 10-best new SUVs, and the Crosstrek is now scored as the most reliable SUV under $30,000 by Consumer Reports.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback

Outback takes the lead for the first time all year

The Subaru Outback led all sales with 10,454 models delivered to customers in November. The Crosstrek was second in sales with 6,314 subcompact SUVs sold to customers, and the Subaru Ascent was third with 5,628 model sales. The Subaru Impreza was fourth in sales with 4,300, and the Subaru Forester dropped to sixth place with 3,791 models delivered to customers.

A recent report from Automotive News (by subscription) says Subaru Corporation President and CEO Tomomi Nakamura said Subaru of America isn't expected to reach 600,000 sales in 2021, short of the 611,942 vehicles Subaru sold in the U.S. in 2020.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback

With 532,664 year-to-date sales, for Subaru to reach 600,000 sales in 2021, they would have to sell 67,336 new models in December, which is unlikely in the current automotive climate and lack of inventory.

"We'll have to consider orders after the Thanksgiving holiday, but we're looking at a little more difficult situation than in previous months," Nakamura said of the U.S. sales outlook. "For the calendar year, we're expecting a number that is below 600,000.”

What's next for new vehicle shoppers?

Customers looking for a 2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Outback, or 2022 Crosstrek will still find a limited inventory of the popular SUVs at the end of 2021 and early 2022. The all-wheel-drive vehicles are getting awards, demand is high, but Subaru retailers still can't get enough of the popular models.

You Might Also Like: Here Is The Next All-New Subaru Model You Want This Year - A Midsize Pickup

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