Last month, Subaru gave us a sneak peek of its first-ever electric vehicle (EV) called the Solterra. Despite having a unique name, the yet-to-be-launched EV crossover appears to resemble its Toyota twin – the bZ4X.
From its stylish exterior to its high-tech cabin, the Solterra will look very much identical to the EV concept revealed by Toyota. No specifications have been released yet. But given that the Soltera and bZ4X are a joint development by the two automakers, the new “Toyobaru” twins will most likely use similar electric powertrains.
But just how serious is Subaru about developing EVs for the future? To prove that the company is making the shift to electric, they recently made some major organizational changes.
In a press release, Subaru announced that its Automotive Business Unit recently established the Manufacturing Engineering Office for Electrified Vehicles as part of the Manufacturing Division. More importantly, the move signifies the brand's commitment to a zero-emissions future.
Subaru did not disclose specific details as to what the new division will do. However, it does indicate that there will be more EVs and electrified models coming from Subaru besides the Solterra. The new division could also signal the development of additional hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions of existing models.
Currently, Subaru only has several models that come with a hybrid powertrain; the Impreza, the Forester, and the XV (aka Crosstrek). With Subaru establishing a dedicated EV manufacturing division, it could help spur the development of more hybrids, plug-in hybrids, EV versions of existing Subaru models.
As more and more automakers continue to embrace EVs and electrification, Subaru aims to be more competitive with its new engineering office for electrified vehicles. But with the Solterra set to debut in 2022, when can we expect the rest of Subaru's EVs to be revealed?