Last post on Jul 20, 2009 at 6:18 PM
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#3105 of 3134 Re: ouch [steve_]
Jan 01, 2009 (10:29 am)
Well actually, his criticism on the Forester (and Subarus in general) is stuff we've all been saying for quite some time here on the Subaru Crew; just not with so much gusto.
What he's missing is—consumers still love the new Forester—even with these faults. This car (and the new Impreza) is why Subaru is one of the very few automakers that will post a sales gain for 2008.
Jan 01, 2009 (12:25 pm)
What cannot be ignored is that if you want an AWD vehicle, the base Forester and Impreza are the only two ways in under $20K new, except for the SX4 which has less power and a very poor dealer network.
Having sat in these models all back to back at the auto show, I don't think you can deny that the interior of both models is "brazenly cheap", but I have driven the Impreza and I believe it to be an $18K drive for an $18K price sticker, so I wouldn't call its drive "cheap" or "tractor-like". I should drive the Forester some time and see how well it drives.
This guy also complains about the fuel economy, but really how well are the class leaders doing? I think the RAV4 is like 21/27 to Forester's 20/27, and CRV is at 20/26 isn't it? So Forester is right there at the head of the pack in a three-way heat.
#3107 of 3134 Driven the Forester with a stick
Jan 01, 2009 (6:56 pm)
And it is painfully slow getting it started, but the model I drove also had very low clutch takeup (inches above the bottom) which made it annoying to launch. But once rolling, the vehicle had plenty of oomph for my liking. If, I buy one, I'm gonna see if the dealer can adjust the position of the clutch release.
I also wouldn't call it cheap by any means. The RAV4 isn't exactly a Lexus and the Forester is nowhere near as cheap inside as the Cheapuinox/Torent. It's on par with something like the Outlander, or the Escape which is acceptable for the under 24k asking price (2.5X Prem. w/AWP)
Jan 05, 2009 (12:59 pm)
And what's more, they were the ONLY ones to do it! Subaru was up in sales for CY 2008, up by 0.3% in a market that ended up down by 18.6%. In the end even Daimler couldn't stay in positive territory, down 1.5% for the year. And of course, the Japanese Big 3 were down by 7.9%, 10.9%, and 15.4% (in alphabetical order). So nobody besides Subaru had a better year in 2008 than they did in 2007.
And I guess that accomplishment can be placed squarely on the shoulders of one model: the redesigned Forester. Which I personally believe took off because the ad campaign for it was much better than other Subaru ads in years past.
#3109 of 3134 Re: They did it!! [nippononly]
Jan 05, 2009 (3:45 pm)
Yeah - "love" campaign was bullseye, no question. One featuring this guy talking about replacing his old Forester was fantastic. But I think it was the product, not the ads that made it. GM has had multiple really good commercials, so what.
Did you guys also notice multiple copycats springing up, or is it just me? "Camry a camry" comes in mind, there was one more I can't remember.
#3110 of 3134 Re: and if that [rsholland]
Jan 09, 2009 (10:48 am)
Tacoma clone? Hmm, may give dealers more volume.
I dunno, though, pickup sales are droppoing, it may be the wrong time to enter that segment.
#3111 of 3134 Re: They did it!! [nippononly]
Jan 09, 2009 (10:50 am)
I predicted the Forester was going to be a hit, but even I, the optimist, didn't think it would be enough to overcome a lousy market. Kudos.
The ad dino brought up really hit home for me - I had a 1998 Forester like the one featured in the ad and bought a 2009 also featured in the ad. My 98 was even the same COLOR!
Jan 20, 2009 (10:10 pm)
I am a little puzzled - it seems that after a year in which Subaru sigificantly out-performed the market and reported a net GAIN in sales, it still came out last Friday and forecast that it will report an operating loss for the year??
Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., the maker of Subaru-brand cars, forecast its first loss in 15 years, as the global recession decimates demand for new cars and a strong yen erodes overseas sales.
Fuji Heavy forecasts a 19 billion yen ($211 million) loss in the year ending March 31, it said in a statement today, scrapping a previous forecast of 10 billion yen in net income. The company will post a 9 billion yen operating loss, compared with a previous forecast of a 23 billion yen operating profit.
Separately, the company lowered its global sales target for this fiscal year by 60,900 vehicles to 554,800, it said in a statement. Fuji Heavy based its earnings forecast on an exchange rate of 101 yen to the dollar, compared with an earlier assumption of 103 yen.
President Ikuo Mori may boost overseas production and procurement because of the strong yen, he told reporters today in Tokyo. He is also cutting board members’ pay by 10 percent from this month and they will not receive bonuses.
Yikes, I would hate to see what the annual results would have been if they were down 18% in the U.S. as the rest of the market was....
...and on a sidenote, it would seem they need to start building Foresters and Imprezas in the U.S. like they do the Legacys and Outbacks, so as to be more protected from the yen exchange rate than they are currently.
#3113 of 3134 Re: golly jeepers [nippononly]
Jan 20, 2009 (11:06 pm)
I think many were simply wishing too hard that Subaru would dodge the same bullit that has hit the rest of the industry. As I have said before subaru owners are some of the most loyal owners I have ever talked to. But when you mentioned Subaru was dropping out of WRC I believe the idea that they simply couldn't afford to stay in the series and they couldn't afford to make a new car should have been an indicator of what was happening.
Yes racing will suffer in general as well as ALMS and F-1 take a hit. But Subaru has not dodged the bullit. anymore than anyone else. They are smaller so a small wound may hurt even more. The first half of 2009 will tell us a lot but I don't think the exchange rate will get any better. Subaru needs to hold on to a niche that may or may not hold up in a world looking for entry level new cars at entry level prices.
#3114 of 3134 Re: golly jeepers [nippononly]
Jan 21, 2009 (3:55 am)
From reading the article it seems that the parent company is reporting a loss, not necessarily Subaru itself. Fuji Heavy is involved in a lot more that just making Subarus, it could be that their loss is unrelated to the car side (they don't really say either way, though at least a third of the loss seems to be from the bankruptcy of the light plane builder that owes them money. They are of course projecting a drop in their sales for the next year, and want to reduce the impact the value of the yen might have. Also just because they had great sales in the US doesn't mean their sales in the rest of the world were as good.