Subaru was founded in Japan in 1953 and is a subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI). Subaru was the first Japanese automobile company to use a name derived from Japanese. The word Subaru (also known by its original Japanese name mutsuraboshi) is the name given in Japanese to the cluster of stars that forms the constellation of Taurus (Pleiades), which is represented in the logo of the brand.

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    The timeline…

    In February 1954 the first model of Subaru appeared, which was named P-1, but was renamed in 1955 as Subaru 1500. It was a medium sized vehicle, with four doors, 4-cylinder engine, 4-stroke 1,485 cc. capacity and water cooling. This engine had a maximum power of 55 hp. The Subaru 1500 used the first Japanese monocoque bodywork. It was designed for passengers and provided excellent driving comfort and stability thanks to its front wheel drive fuse, independent suspension, a coil combination and a double-action oil regulator with rigid rear axle suspension. It also had a three-leaf spring and the combination of a double-acting oil regulator.

    Sales had to be suspended due to difficulties in financing factory equipment and chain sales, and it wasn’t until four years later that a new Subaru model, the 360, appeared.

    Subaru is a pioneer in the implementation of all-wheel drive in passenger cars. All its models (except one subcompact that is only sold in Japan) have this system, either as standard or optionally.

    In 1966, the 1000 model was introduced, the first front-wheel drive car to be mass-produced in Japan.

    Another important milestone for Subaru was the 1972 SW 4WD, the world’s first four-wheel-drive car of its kind.

    Another peculiarity of the brand is the use of the boxer engine of horizontally opposed cylinders which gives their cars a lower center of gravity than cars that mount engines with V cylinders or in line.

    On February 15, 1967 Malcolm Bricklin and Harvey Lamm founded Subaru of America (SoA) in Pennsylvania and signed a contract with Fuji Heavy Industries to import Subaru cars. In their first year, in 1968, they imported 332 cars. In 2000 SoA sold 172,216 cars.

    In 2004 Subaru manufactured a total of 601,505 vehicles, ranking 19th in the world ranking of manufacturers.

    Between 1999 and 2005, General Motors was a minority shareholder with 20% of the shares. In 2005, General Motors sold 8.7% of its Subaru shares to Toyota and put the rest on sale on the open market. Later, Toyota expanded its stake and in 2008 held 16.5% of Subaru’s shares.

    If you still haven’t found the Subaru you’re looking for, go to Subaru Machtbox.

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