Subaru Outlines Prominence 2020 Business Plan
Contrary to what it may sound like, Prominence 2020 is not a spaceship from an old Saturday morning cartoon or a terrible sequel to Alien.
Today, Subaru announced its business plan for the next five years, entitled Prominence 2020, which includes a target 20 percent sales increase by 2020, a new vehicle platform, and more fuel-efficient engines.
The plan outlined Friday by Subaru’s parent company, Fuji Heavy Industries LTD., predicts that American sales volume will reach 600,000 units by 2020. While more than a little ambitious, Subaru’s track record in the United States make it seem more plausible than not: Subaru has increased sales in the United States for six consecutive years and has increased monthly sales by double digits since January 2013.
Through the first third of 2014, Subaru’s sales in America are already up 22 percent over 2013.
The projections for 2020 coincided with Fuji Heavy president Yasuyuki Yoshinaga’s announcement of record sales, earnings, revenue, and profit for the fiscal year, which ended March 31. Prominence 2020 was added to the agenda for the announcement because, as Automotive News notes, Fuji Heavy and Subaru have achieved the goals of their previous five-year plan well ahead of next year’s deadline.
Fuji Heavy announced that Subaru will begin work on a new modularized platform in 2016. The platform, entitled Subaru Global Platform, will debut in the next-gen Impreza and support all Subaru models.
Also announced was a seven-seat SUV that will serve as the replacement for the Tribeca, scheduled to launch between 2016 and 2020.
Subaru will also drop all gasoline engines for direct injection by 2016 and aims to incorporate cylinder deactivation by 2020.
Plans are also in place for a Subaru plug-in hybrid model, based upon Toyota hybrid tech, sometime by 2018.
Subaru also plans to cut production costs by 20 percent before 2020 by streamlining manufacturing, relying on global platform sharing, and building more efficiently-designed vehicles.
It is anticipated that much of the new production detailed in Subaru’s Prominence 2020 plan will take place within North America and the United States. Today’s announcement that Toyota will shift Camry manufacturing out of Lafayette, Indiana and into Georgetown, Kentucky gives Subaru an additional output capacity of 100,000 vehicles to play with.