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Subaru Shuts Down US Plant-What it Means For Customers

Subaru’s US plant where they make the 2020 Outback is shut down as a result of COVID-19. See what it means for customers.

Subaru announced yesterday, it will shut down its U.S. plant in Lafayette, Indiana because of COVID-19 starting on Monday. Subaru Indiana Automotive (SIA) produces the 2020 Subaru Outback wagon, Ascent family hauler, Legacy sedan, and Impreza compact sedan and hatchback at the U.S. plant. In a statement, SIA said, “In response to COVID-19, we are temporarily suspending production from March 23-29. Only limited personal will be working on-site during the shutdown.”

SIA production accounts for approximately 52 percent of Subaru of America’s vehicle sales. Forester, Crosstrek, WRX, WRX STI, and BRZ models are produced in Japan, however, Subaru Corporation has not announced a shutdown of its main plant in Gunma, Japan. In a statement sent to Automotive News, an SIA plant spokesman says, "To further ensure the health and safety of associates and to adjust the volume for market demand as a result of COVID-19, Subaru Indiana Automotive is suspending production.”

A report from WLFI in Indiana said SIA sent two employees home after coming into contact with a person carrying the Coronavirus virus. SIA shut down one engine assembly line and immediately started disinfecting the area. Although, no SIA employees have tested positive for the virus themselves.

How will the plant shutdown affect customers?

Because Subaru of America already has one of the lowest vehicle inventory levels of any automaker, it could affect 2020 Subaru Outback and Ascent models the most, as these are two of the most popular Subaru models built in the US. Subaru dealers have an ample supply of both models now, and it will depend on if sales in March and April are slow.

2020 Subaru Outback, 2020 Subaru Ascent2020 Subaru Ascent rolls off the assembly line

J.D. Power vice president for data and analytics, Tyson Jominy, told Wards Auto depending on if production disruption is modest, inventory levels will rise, but customers could see automakers offering incentives, such as low-interest financing. Auto-specific government stimulus programs would help, too, Jominy says.

Currently, Subaru is already offering zero-percent financing on all 2020 Ascent models, and 0.9 percent on all new 2020 Outback models. Stay tuned to Torque News for updates on all Subaru production.

2020 Subaru Outback, 2020 Subaru AscentThe 2020 Subaru Outback is made in Indiana

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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. All of his reports are archived on our Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Subaru Report. Check back tomorrow for more Subaru news and updates at Torque News!

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Photo credit: Subaru