Text: Anton Andres / Photos: | posted March 04, 2016 12:57
Offering all-wheel drive since 1972
Subaru, renowned for their all-wheel drive systems, has just reached a major production milestone. Since 1972, Subaru has been fitting all-wheel drive to their mainstream model and this year, the company has just produced its 15th million car with all-wheel drive.
The first Subaru to be available all-wheel drive is the Leone Estate, introduced in September 1972. Since then, succeeding Subaru models have been fitted with the system and the brand has been synonymous with it ever since. The Leone's production ran from 1972 to 1994. In the late 70's Subaru also produced a lifestyle pick-up based on the Leone called the BRAT or the Bi-drive Recreational All-terrain Transporter.
Subaru further expanded its lineup in the mid-80's with the introduction of the Justy subcompact hatchback and the sporty Alcyone, both available with all-wheel drive although most went for the option for the coupe. Bringing the range into the 90's was the Legacy, Subaru's first and only mid-size sedan while the Leone was retired and taking its place is the now iconic Impreza.
The brand cemented its mainstream popularity thanks to its successes in the World Rally Championship, first with the Legacy then followed by the Impreza which eventually spawned the high performance STI models. Subaru then entered the crossover market in 1997 with the Forester and has been one of the company's best-sellers.
These days, Subaru has a wide variety of models, all available or standard with all wheel drive. At the time of writing, 98% of Subarus sold globally are equipped with the brand's Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. In the Philippines, the range consists of the Impreza, XV, Levorg, Forester, Legacy, Outback and, the lone two wheel drive model, BRZ.