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Subaru Readying First Hybrid

Maker hopes higher mileage will fuel further growth.

by on Jan.23, 2013

The Subaru Advanced Tourer Concept shown at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show featured a hybrid drivetrain.

Subaru is getting ready to roll out its first hybrid as it continues to refresh its product line, which has doubled in its market share in the U.S. over the past five years.

Officials from the Japanese automaker declined to offer any details about the new hybrid, which is expected to make its debut at the New York Auto Show at the end of March. But Kenichi Yamamoto, director of product management and coordination at Subaru of America, confirmed parent Fuji Heavy Industries is working on a hybrid model.

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Other Subaru officials also acknowledged that a hybrid vehicle was in the works and could debut this spring.

Yamamoto explained that Subaru’s interest in hybrid vehicles follows the steady expansion of hybrid sales in Japan. Hybrids now account for a large and growing share of the new vehicles sold in Japan particularly those from Toyota, Honda and Nissan, Japan’s three largest automakers.