Subaru Product Answers

Is all wheel drive standard on every Subaru?
Yes, since 1997. Subaru is the only full-line manufacturer that produces all its vehicles with all wheel drive.  Not all all wheel drive systems are created equal. Click here
to see it in action.
a rear wheel drive sports car, is the only Subaru model without all wheel drive. 

Does all wheel drive hurt fuel economy?
Yes, but just a tiny bit.  Before 1997, when some Subaru's were available with front wheel drive, the all wheel drive models were rated one mile less per gallon.  The all wheel drive hardware only adds about 150 pounds, so having all wheel drive is like having another person in your car.  But what a guy!  If you could have an extra "passenger" that kept you a lot safer under virtually every driving condition, you would want him with you all the time!  Make your next car a Stanley Subaru and you'll have a guardian angel riding shotgun.

Subaru's are getting bigger in terms of size and cargo room, does that hurt fuel economy? 
As Subaru's are getting bigger, their fuel efficiency is actually improving because of advances in engine and transmission technology.  Also, Subaru is now using even more high strength steel so the cars can get bigger without getting heavier.

When will Subaru build a hybrid?
We have the Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid!  It is a mild hybrid, more like Honda's Integrated Motor Assist than Toyota's Synergy drive.  A 10-watt electric motor, powered by a lithium-ion battery pack, will sit between a 2.0 liter turbocharged boxer engine and Subaru's Lineartronic continuously variable transmission.  To learn more, click here.

What is a Subaru boxer engine and how is it different than a mortal car? 
In most cars built now, the cylinders that generate power are arranged like wine bottles standing straight up.  This is an "in-line" configuration.  In a "V6" or a "V8," the cylinders are arranged at an angle, like tilted wine bottles in the shape of a V.  In a Subaru BOXER engine
, the cylinders lie flat. When the engine is on, the pistons moving inside the cylinders pass each other like arms of sparring boxers, hence the name.  Only Porsche and Subaru use a BOXER engine, and they choose it for its ability to generate a lot of power from a small, light package that can be mounted low in the vehicle for great handling. 

The horizontally-opposed configuration of the SUBARU BOXER engine places the pistons 180 degrees apart, for a lower, flatter profile than other engine types. This gives the engine, and the overall vehicle, a lower center of gravity and better balance. Further, the pistons' opposing movements counteract each other, naturally helping to reduce vibration. This year, a new generation of engines delivers enhanced output, efficiency and emissions whilst sharing all the legendary benefits of the 11 million SUBARU BOXER engines already produced.(see more detail at for a short video, Click here.

Where can I find a model overview that will help me find my perfect Subaru?
Try Stanley Subaru's *Secret* Subaru Model Decoder!

Where are the cars manufactured?
The Crosstrek, BRZ, Forester, and Impreza are built in Japan.  Legacy, Outback, and Tribeca are built in Lafayette, Indiana.  For more about Subaru's zero landfill U.S. plant,
Click Here.

What's the difference between a Forester and an Outback?
There is a lot to cover. Here's an entire page dedicated to just this question! The really, really short version is:
  • They both have 8.7" ground clearance.
  • They both have symmetrical all-wheel drive.
  • The Forester sits higher.
  • The Outback has a longer wheelbase
  • The Outback can tow more.
  • Most Outbacks have better fuel economy.
  • The Forester has sportier handling.
For more in-depth information, check out the full analysis here.


What is a turbocharger?
A turbocharger is a fan used to blow more air into the cylinders.  By increasing oxygen available for combustion, the engine can inject more fuel to generate extra power.  Turbocharging allows a small, lightweight four cylinder engine to generate power more efficiently than a bigger, heavier six- or eight- cylinder engine.  Subaru offers turbocharged engines on the Forester, Impreza, and Legacy.

What is a Continuously Variable Transmission?
Starting with the 2010 model year, the
four-cylinder Outback and Legacy use a continuously variable transmission (CVT) which has no gears.  In very simple terms, it's a fantastically durable steel belt that moves along a cone...the fatter part of the cone for speed, the narrower part for power. For more on CVT technology, Click Here!

What is Vehicle Dynamics Control?
VDC helps prevent skids.  First introduced by Subaru as breakthrough technology in 2001, it's now standard on every new Subaru since 2009.  Sensors throughout the car monitor where you're trying to go and where the car is actually going.  Most of the time, fortunately, the car is going where you want it to go.  But on a icy corner, for example, the rear end of the car might start sliding.  To restore control, VDC will apply braking pressure to slow individual wheels or apply engine power to speed up individual wheels.  In nanoseconds, VDC will bring your Subaru back into line.
See VDC in action!

What are Anti-Lock Brakes?
Standard on every Subaru, ABS keeps your wheels spinning during braking.  During braking, you want your wheels to slow--not stop.  If the car is moving but the wheels aren't, you can no longer control the just skid.  ABS works with a sensor at each wheel that monitors rotation.  If the wheel is about to lock up, the sensor sends a message to your car's hydraulic pump to release and then reapply the pressure.
See more on the Anti-Lock Brake System.

What is Subaru Brake Assist?
Research shows that drivers do not always apply all the pressure they should before an imminent collision.  They hit the brakes hard, but not hard enough to maximize the car's ability to stop.  Standard on every Subaru since 2009, Brake Assist monitors the rate at which your foot moves the pedal.  If your foot movement is sharp, the car will automatically apply the full force of the braking system instantaneously...substituting a heart-thumping close call for a nasty accident. Read more on Subaru's Brake Assist System.

What is the difference between active safety and passive safety?
Active safety comprises the systems on a car that prevent an accident from ever happening.  Examples on a Subaru include all wheel drive, anti-lock brakes, vehicle dynamics control, and brake assist.  Passive safety comprises the systems on a car that protect you in an accident.  Examples on a Subaru include a ring-shaped reinforcement frame, extensive use of high-tensile steel,
a boxer engine that collapses underneath the passenger compartments, and sophisticated airbag systems that weigh occupants to deploy with just the amount of force to prevent injury.

Have more questions? Contact Us!



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