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Insuring Your Subaru

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Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, Subaru is the vehicle manufacturing division of the Japanese transportation conglomerate Fuji Heavy Industries. Subaru vehicles are known for their durability on various types of terrain. The name Subaru is the Japanese name of the star cluster, Pleiades, which is also featured on the Subaru logo.

 

Subaru History

Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) was created in 1915 and became a major aircraft producer for Japan during World War II. It wasn’t until the early 1950s when CEO, Kenji Kita, wanted to develop a car manufacturing branch. The first prototype was the Subaru 1500, a passenger car created in 1954. Within the next 10 years, Subaru created new models, such as the 360 mini car, 450 and Sambar truck.

In 1966, the Subaru’s head office was established in Shinjuku, Japan. In 1968, Subaru of America was established in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and later moved to its current location in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. In that same year, Nissan Motor Co. acquired 20.4 percent stake in FHI and under this deal, released models such as the R-2, BRAT, Alcyone, Legacy, Impreza and Forester.

In 1985, the XT (Alcyone) was the first Subaru to be released in overseas markets before being released in Japan. Throughout the 1990s, Subaru continued to grow, releasing models such as the Baja, Outback Sport, Traviq and Vivio. Popular Subaru models include Outback, Tribeca, Legacy, Impreza and Forester. In addition, throughout the years, Subaru has developed partnerships with Toyota and collaborated on projects and future vehicle models.

Subaru is dedicated to environmentally friendly policies, such as recycling and reducing harmful emissions. Many current Subaru models are Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle (PZEV) certified. Additionally, Subaru initiatives such as zero landfill status, and recycling programs help to reduce emissions of chemicals and parts that could endanger the environment. Subaru is currently partnered with initiatives, such as Leave No Trace, Geological Society of America and American Canoe Association.

Along with environmental programs, in the last decade, Subaru has been testing electric vehicle technology and in 2007, Subaru vehicles used Controller Area Network (CAN bus) technology. Subaru’s vehicle design is based on the philosophy of adapting to the changing environment while standing firm in its rooted values. Subaru vehicles are designed with distinct hexagonal car grilles.

Subaru has also been heavily involved in motorsport since the 1980s, creating the Subaru Rally Team in Japan. In December 1994, Subaru participated in WRC race for the first time and finished second overall. For the next three years, Subaru took the manufacturers’ title from 1995 to 1997. Subaru also set the world record for fastest sub 1.0L car as well as set endurance records and continues to race different models with the Subaru racing teams.

Insurance Rates

Subarus are one of the top selling vehicles in the United States, and for the most part, the cars are relatively affordable. For a number of reasons, Subaru insurance premiums can run a little higher than other vehicles. For example, rates can start as low as $1,400 for the Subaru Ascent and go as high as $1,800 for the Impreza. Factors that affect price include make, model, driving record, etc.

Subaru and Top Safety

Subarus are continuously ranked as one of the Top Safety Picks by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), which can help reduce insurance rates. In a new rating of safest cars, these 7 models top the list: the Ascent, Crosstrek, Impreza sedan and wagon, Legacy, Outback and WRX. The Forester did not qualify, due to an evaluation of its headlights, but it garnered a spot in the second group.

Theft Rates

Unfortunately, the popularity of Subarus with consumers means that they are also popular among car thieves. Newer model Subarus aren’t in as much demand, but Subaru models made before 2001 are often targeted. The vehicles have a higher theft rate in places like the Pacific Northwest, where the cars are very popular. The theft rate of certain models can affect the Subaru insurance bottom line in some cases, leading to potentially increased costs.

Keeping an older Subaru model safe can be as simple as parking it inside a garage or in a protected parking enclosure. Many older cars are stolen off the street and in broad daylight, adding to owners’ frustration. In Seattle alone 4,715 vehicles were stolen in 2014, and 525 of those were just in October. Steering wheel locks and anti-theft devices can be a big deterrent to car thieves looking for a car that’s easy to break into.

Newer model vehicles have security features that make it nearly impossible for car thieves to take what isn’t theirs. Devices like engine immobilizers, smart keys, and kill switches all temporarily disable a vehicle until the owner gets back.

The Subaru Forrester, Outback, WRX, and Crosstrek all come with remote keyless power door locks, engine immobilizers, and remote anti-theft alarm systems for additional security, which could decrease the cost of Subaru insurance for some drivers.

Subaru "Viziv" Concept Car

 

All in all, the pros outweigh the cons in terms of Subaru’s value. Most owners are very happy with the vehicles they own.

 

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