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Subaru plans hybrid in 2012

Automotive News reports on Subaru's plans to offer a hybrid.

Automotive News

TOKYO -- Subaru, which showed a concept hybrid vehicle at the Tokyo Motor Show, will add a hybrid powertrain to an existing model in 2012.

But Ikuo Mori, president of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., maker of Subaru cars, wouldn't say when the hybrid vehicle will go on sale in the United States.

Speaking on the sidelines of the show, Mori said the car will help Subaru meet tougher U.S. fuel economy and emissions rules that begin in the 2016 model year.

Mori declined to say which model will offer the hybrid powertrain but suggested it will be a small vehicle. He said the hybrid system will showcase typical Subaru driving characteristics but didn't say whether it will have all-wheel drive.

At the show, Subaru displayed an awd hybrid touring car with two motors, one for each axle. That car loosely resembles the Outback wagon.

It featured a new 2.0-liter, turbocharged, direct-injection engine and stop-start technology, which turns the engine off when the vehicle stops.

Subaru has been developing its own hybrid drivetrain based on technology from Toyota Motor Corp., which owns 16.5 percent of Fuji Heavy.

(Source: Automotive News)