Subaru of America (SOA) crossed the finish line of a challenging year because of new model shortages due to ongoing supply chain challenges. But SOA finished the year strong with an uptick in sales. The finish reveals more 2023 Crosstrek, Outback, Forester, and other new models were available to buy from Subaru retailers.
But not all Subaru vehicles finished up in sales for the year, and more finished down than up. Subaru of America reported they delivered 556,581 vehicles to U.S. customers compared with 583,810 in 2022. SOA sold 56,760 cars to customers in December, up 11.0 percent compared with 51,146 models sold in December 2021.
There is strong demand for the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek subcompact SUV, Outback midsize SUV, Forester compact SUV, Ascent 3-Row family hauler, and other models. But the Subaru all-wheel-drive lineup is shaken up to finish the year.
Three Subaru winners to finish the year
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.
The Subaru Ascent 3-Row SUV was another surprise model to finish in 2022. Ascent was up 6.2 percent for the year and is only one of two SUVs to finish the year in positive sales, along with the hot Crosstrek. 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 rear-drive 2023 BRZ sports coupe dropped 69.6 percent in December, with 325 model sales. But the BRZ sports coupe finished the year up 44.2 percent, with 3,345 models delivered to U.S. customers. It’s not surprising because the BRZ received a complete remodel, and customers bought more next-generation models.
Five Subaru losers to finish the year
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.
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 Impreza fell 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.
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 Subaru Solterra had its first entire month of sales
In its first full month of sales, SOA reported that the all-new 2023 Subaru Solterra electric compact SUV sold 825 EVs to U.S. customers. The Solterra had 919 total model sales in 2022 after arriving in November.
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 Crosstrek, Outback, Ascent, and Forester, Subaru of America (SOA) finished 2022 down only 4.7 percent.
The outlook for 2023
With the new year here, 2023 will be better for new car shoppers. Subaru production is up in Japan, where the 2023 Crosstrek and Forester are manufactured, and in Lafayette, Indiana, where the 2023 Outback, Ascent, Impreza, and Legacy are made. Three new next-generation models will arrive this year. The 2024 Subaru Impreza, 2024 Crosstrek, and 2024 Subaru Forester. Stay tuned.
Will you be buying a new Subaru model this year? If you are, which Subaru vehicles will you be purchasing? Let us know in the comment section below.
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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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