Having been around for over a century, Subaru has steadily risen in the car manufacturing industry, but never more so than in recent times. In 2009, 216,652 Americans bought a Subaru. This was followed by seven record-breaking years with the culmination of 615,132 Subarus sold in America in 2016.
Compared to other companies, Subaru is relatively small, with fewer cars on the line. However many car enthusiasts compare the luxury, performance and reliability to top car manufacturers like BMW and Lexus.
Subaru also has one of the best records for customer loyalty – with the majority of customers staying with Subaru after switching from another company. However, the main reason anyone switches back is down to the lack of seven-seater cars.
The biggest downfall for the company came from the lack of larger cars. They have a range of family-friendly wagons and hatchbacks, but nothing that exceeds five-seats. The 2005 launch of the seven-seat Tribecca was too small and was discontinued less than a decade later.
Subaru vehicles are known for ease of maintenance, although the cars themselves are expensive, the cost of a Subaru mechanic isn’t any more than for any other vehicle. The cost of repairs comes down to the cost of parts, which is slightly higher, but they come with long-life assurances.
But now, Subaru has come up with the new Subaru Ascent. This three-row SUV seats eight and competes with many of the classics from Ford and Chevrolet. It was revealed in this year’s New York Auto Show to great success.
Tom Doll, the Subaru America President, said that the plan is to keep the generation that grew up with Subarus with the company. Meaning that Millennials who grew up during the boom of success over the past decade, who might have had Subarus since learning to drive, now have a car that has grown with them – a family-car ready for the new generation.
There are rumours of a possible hybrid version, but no official comment has been made. Passing up the chance of a hybrid SUV, to follow in the success of cars like Toyota’s Hybrid SUV seems like a stupid move.
The Ascent concept is decked out with technology, from a built in Sat Nav to touchscreen locks and window mechanisms. The sleek design is one we have come to know from Subaru, and the heavy front grill is one we often find synonymous with SUVs. The style follows on nicely the Visiv-7, with a few technological advances. The concept measures 78.3 inches wide, 198.8 inches long and 72.4 inches tall. The 117-inch wheelbase puts Subaru directly in line with other large SUV companies. The car also boasts a newly developed turbocharged Boxer engine.
The Ascent is a big step in the right direction for Subaru, and it will hopefully be rolled out throughout the world. Currently, productions are limited to America, but there are hopes for the UK, Europe and part of Asia.