Subaru Builds 15 Millionth AWD Vehicle

Craig Cole
by Craig Cole
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subaru builds 15 millionth awd vehicle

Subaru is known for two things: quirkiness and all-wheel drive. Marking an important milestone, the Japanese automaker just announced that it’s produced its 15 millionth vehicle equipped with four-corner traction.

This is a monumental accomplishment for such a small car company. Not surprisingly, it took a whopping 44 years to achieve this. A quick glance at the brand’s overall sales and it’s not hard to see why. In the U.S. last year Subaru sold fewer than 583,000 vehicles. For a little perspective, Toyota sold nearly 430,000 Camrys.

Still, all of this tremendous heritage started back in September of 1972 when the company’s Leone 4WD Estate Van went on sale. Over the last four and a half decades Subaru has continued to enhance its all-wheel-drive technology, transforming it into the industry leading system it is today.

SEE ALSO: 2016 Subaru Crosstrek Review

Globally, 98 percent of the company’s vehicles were sold with all-wheel drive last year. The same is true of Subaru’s horizontally opposed boxer engines, which are quite unique in the marketplace today. Very few automakers still use this cylinder-block configuration.

In America, the only model they offer that’s not equipped with all-wheel drive is the BRZ sports car; in everything else it’s standard.

With their unique drivetrain configurations, Subaru vehicles have abundant traction and low centers of gravity for enhanced road holding, traits that make them darlings in areas where the weather is nasty. Here’s to the next 15 million, Subaru!

Discuss this story on our Subaru Forum.

Craig Cole
Craig Cole

Born and raised in metro Detroit, Craig was steeped in mechanics from childhood. He feels as much at home with a wrench or welding gun in his hand as he does behind the wheel or in front of a camera. Putting his Bachelor's Degree in Journalism to good use, he's always pumping out videos, reviews, and features for When the workday is over, he can be found out driving his fully restored 1936 Ford V8 sedan. Craig has covered the automotive industry full time for more than 10 years and is a member of the Automotive Press Association (APA) and Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA).

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Join the conversation
  • Craig Cole Craig Cole on Mar 03, 2016

    Personally, I don't understand the appeal of Subarus ... at all, but whatever. Kudos on the 15 million!

    • See 1 previous
    • Pywaket_1 Pywaket_1 on Mar 04, 2016

      Rock solid build quality. Relatively fun to drive (not Mazda-level good, but certainly better than Toyotas/Hondas). If you like to maintain your own car, they're quite well designed for that as well (I've worked on a lot of cars, and Subarus are by far the easiest modern car to maintain). They last forever, and don't bore you to death like some other cars in that category do (Camry, Corolla). The AWD is a big plus if you live where it snows a bunch, and need to get places no matter what the weather, and don't want an SUV. And the prices are reasonable compared to the competition. At about the same price as a Civic or Corolla, an Impreza gives you AWD essentially for free. Plus, station wagons! If you want a wagon from Toyota or Honda, you have to buy one of their crossover SUVs. You can get the Impreza or Outback as a wagon if you want it. There's other reasons, but those are some of the big ones.