Coupe in Subaru's pipeline will be an image booster

Automotive News reports on Subaru's new model plans.

Automotive News
2 min read
Subaru Outback
Until new models arrive for the 2012 model year, the year-old Outback, shown, and Legacy are the newest vehicles in Subaru's U.S. lineup. Subaru

Subaru plans to extend its lineup in late 2011 or early 2012 by adding a sporty coupe developed with Toyota.

Also, an Impreza hybrid that uses technology from Toyota is expected in 2012. Toyota now owns about 17 percent of Subaru.

While updating the rest of its five-vehicle lineup, Subaru is concentrating on increasing interior space and adding features such as iPod and Bluetooth connections.

Here are Subaru's product plans:

Sporty coupe: The lightweight two door being developed with Toyota will give Subaru a needed image vehicle. The exterior of Subaru's version will differ from the Toyota. The rear-drive coupe is expected to be available with either Subaru's 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine or the 2.5-liter turbocharged engine from the Impreza STI. It is unclear whether the car will be a 2012 or 2013 model.

Currently, all Subarus have all-wheel drive. It isn't known whether the new sports car will have that feature.

Forester: In November, Subaru will reportedly introduce a new-generation version of its horizontally opposed engine in the crossover. The 2.5-liter engine is expected to get 10 percent better fuel economy than the current engine. A spokesman for Subaru's parent company, Fuji Heavy Industries, confirmed that a new engine will be added by year-end, but declined to give specifications or say what models it would get it

The Forester is scheduled to get a freshening in 2012 or 2013.

Impreza: The compact sedan and five-door model will be redesigned for the 2012 model year with bodies created by new design chief Osamu Namba. There are reports that the Impreza will have a hybrid variant, with Subaru getting hybrid technology from Toyota.

The Impreza WRX and high-performance STI will get new sheet metal but likely not until the 2013 model year.

Outback/Legacy: The Legacy sedan and Outback wagon are only a year old. No changes are expected until the 2014 model year.

Tribeca: Subaru's oldest model is likely to be freshened in the 2012 model year. Subaru won't say whether there will be a second-generation Tribeca. The slow-selling SUV debuted with five- and seven-seat versions, but now only the seven-seater is offered.

(Source: Automotive News)