Subaru of America

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39°55′20″N 75°02′46″W / 39.9223326°N 75.0460762°W / 39.9223326; -75.0460762

Subaru of America, Inc.
Founded1968; 55 years ago (1968); in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Key people
Tadashi “Tady” Yoshida[1](Chairman of the Board and CEO, Subaru of America)
Jeffrey A. Walters,[2](President, Chief Operating Officer, Subaru of America)
ProductsSubaru vehicles in the United States market
Number of employees
ParentSubaru Corporation
Subaru Research & Development in Cypress, California

Subaru of America, Inc. (commonly known as SOA), based in Camden, New Jersey, is the United States-based distributor of Subaru's brand vehicles. SOA is a subsidiary of Subaru Corporation of Japan. The company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 600 dealers throughout the United States. SOA also plays a minor role in the design of vehicles for the U.S. market, working with Subaru Corporation and Subaru Research and Development to help convey American consumer preferences.

In 1967, Malcolm Bricklin approached Subaru with the idea of bringing the tiny Subaru 360 to the United States. After a great deal of regulatory red tape and negotiation, Bricklin made a deal with Subaru. Bricklin formed Subaru of America, Inc. to sell Subaru franchises and later brought in Harvey Lamm as the COO.

Subaru of America established the Eastern Division in 1968 in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania at 555 City Line Avenue, and the Western Division at 1000 West Coast Hwy, Newport Beach, California.[4] The headquarters later moved to Pennsauken, New Jersey and then Cherry Hill, New Jersey. In 1986, it was fully acquired by Fuji Heavy Industries (now named Subaru Corporation).

In 1989, Fuji Heavy Industries and then-partner Isuzu opened a joint factory in Lafayette, Indiana, called Subaru-Isuzu Automotive, Inc., or SIA, which initially manufactured the Subaru Legacy and Isuzu Rodeo. In 2001, Isuzu sold its stake in the plant to FHI for $1 due to flagging sales and it was renamed Subaru of Indiana Automotive, Inc. SIA has been designated a backyard wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation, and has achieved a zero-landfill production designation. SOA is SIA's largest customer, being the sole distributor in the United States for SIA produced vehicles, although SIA also ships vehicles to Canada and various other countries for sale by other Subaru Affiliates and independent distributors. SOA also utilizes SIA's two mile test track and off-road course for dealer incentive programs and training.

Subaru built a new 250,000 square foot headquarters in Camden, New Jersey and relocated there in 2018. In May 2019 demolition started on the previous Subaru building in Cherry Hill.[5]

In the United States, Subaru vehicles have been associated with being popular with lesbians. This comes from Subaru of America's marketing strategy from 1993, at a time when very few celebrities were out as LGBT and "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and Defense of Marriage Act had just passed. Subaru was at the time marketing more towards niche groups such as skiers and kayakers. As all-wheel drive was becoming standard on all Subaru models, when looking for people willing to pay a premium for all-wheel drive, four possible core groups were identified, who at the time were responsible for half of Subaru's US sales: teachers and educators, health-care professionals, IT professionals, and outdoorsy types. A fifth group was found - single women living in places like Northampton, Massachusetts and Portland, Oregon, well known meccas of LGBT community. The lesbian Subaru customers liked that the cars were "good for outdoor trips, and good for hauling stuff without being as large as a truck or SUV, fitting them without being too flashy". Some Subaru ads for that reason have featured double entendres with LGBT-related terms. In addition, Subaru of America has actively supported the LGBT community, such as supporting the Rainbow Card providing dedicated benefits to the community, and has been credited with treating its LGBT customers as "people, not consumers".[6][7][8][9][10][11][12] In a Car Talk e-mail nominations survey, Forester and Outback were ranked as #2 and #1, respectively, of "The Ultimate Lesbian Cars".[13]


Subaru cars available in the United States, which are sold by SOA:

Present models

Past models


With the rise of rally racing, and the import scene in the U.S., the introduction of the highly anticipated Subaru Impreza WRX in 2001 was successful in bringing high performance, AWD compact cars into the sports car mainstream. Subaru supplies a factory-backed team for Rally America, and has won the driver's title in five of the seasons.[14]

Starting in 2006, Subaru of America sponsored the Subaru Road Racing Team (SRRT) with a Subaru Legacy 2.5 GT Spec-B in the Grand-Am Street Tuner class. In 2010, SRRT campaigns a WRX STI in the Grand Sport class.[15]

See also


  1. ^ "Subaru of America, Inc. Announces Key Executive Changes".
  2. ^ "Jeffrey A. Walters". Subaru.
  3. ^ "Subaru-Indiana Automotive".
  4. ^ "Once "Cheap and Ugly," the Subaru 360 is having an unexpected moment". Hagerty. The Hagerty Group. 6 January 2021. Retrieved 14 January 2021.
  5. ^ "Subaru - New Camden Home".
  6. ^ Beedham, Matthew (2020-08-03). "How Subaru created the blueprint for selling cars to LGBTQIA+ consumers". TNW | Sustainability. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  7. ^ Priceonomics, Alex Mayyasi (2016-06-22). "How Subarus Came to Be Seen as Cars for Lesbians". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  8. ^ Rode, Izzy (2014-01-02). "Outward Explainer: What's With Lesbians and Subarus?". Slate Magazine. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  9. ^ Mayyasi, Alex (2016-05-23). "How an Ad Campaign Made Lesbians Fall in Love with Subaru". Priceonomics. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  10. ^ "Companies Begin Marketing to Gay Market". ABC News. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  11. ^ Toce, Sarah (2018-09-16). "These Subaru 'Lesbaru' tweets are the reason we're smiling today". LGBTQ Nation. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  12. ^ Rook, Erin (2016-06-23). "Lesbians didn't create the Lezbaru, Subaru marketers did". LGBTQ Nation. Retrieved 2023-05-17.
  13. ^ "The Ultimate Gay and Lesbian Cars of All Time". Car Talk.
  14. ^ "Congratulations Travis Pastrana". 2009-08-30. Archived from the original on 2012-03-12. Retrieved 2010-09-23.
  15. ^ "Subaru Impreza WRX STI SRRT racecars". 2010-02-01. Retrieved 2010-09-23.

External links