Subaru (スバル?) is the automobile manufacturing division of Japanese transportation conglomerate Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI), the twenty-second biggest automaker by production worldwide in 2012.
Subaru is known for its use of the boxer engine layout in most of its vehicles above 1500 cc as well as its use of the Symmetrical All Wheel Drive drive-train layout since 1972. The flat/boxer engine and all-wheel-drive became standard equipment for mid-size and smaller cars in most international markets by 1996, and is now standard in most North American market Subaru vehicles. The lone exception is the BRZ, introduced in 2012, which uses the boxer engine but is rear-wheel-drive. Subaru also offers turbocharged versions of their passenger cars, such as the Impreza WRX and the Legacy 2.5GT. The 2.5XT trims of the Outback and Forester also include a turbocharged engine.
Fuji Heavy Industries, the parent company of Subaru, is currently in a partial partnership with Toyota Motor Corporation, which owns 16.5% of FHI.
Subaru is the Japanese name for the Pleiades star cluster M45, or “The Seven Sisters” (one of whom tradition says is invisible – hence only six stars in the Subaru logo), which in turn inspires the logo and alludes to the companies that merged to create FHI.
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