Subaru of New Zealand knew they were onto a winner with the 2015 Outback but the capable and charismatic SUV has now become a record-breaker – selling more in seven months than the company ever has in a year.
At the end of July, 646 Outbacks had been sold (including 107 that month), streaking in front of the previous total sales record of 591 in 2006. That means Outback is already charging 9% ahead of the former best ever Outback sales year in only seven months!
Annual sales are also up accordingly, with 1039 Subarus total sold in 2014 and 1305 total sold year-to-date in 2015. This sees Subaru racing ahead of last year’s sales by a whopping 25%.
Subaru of New Zealand Managing Director Wallis Dumper is proud of Outback’s continued success.
"Who would have thought that this fantastic new SUV could surpass all our expectations for replacing New Zealand’s favourite wagon. The Legacy wagon is iconic in NZ and after decades of sales and happy customers, frankly it was a worry that the wagon was being discontinued."
However, as soon as he drove the test cars in Japan he knew the all-new Outback would easily satisfy Legacy wagon customers.
“This SUV drives like a car and given the new pricing we knew any Legacy wagon customer who was satisfied with the drive would be elated with the price position”
The 2015 Outback has been competitively priced - starting at $44,990 for the Outback Sport 2.5i, which is the same price as the previous generation Legacy. This appealing price point has seen Legacy customers flocking to buy the new generation Outback.
There have been no trim-downs in terms of technology as the 2015 Outback – like all Subaru models – has Symmetrical All Wheel Drive – along with X-Mode technology. Award winning “driver assist system” Eyesight Technology appears in all of the Outback petrol variants.
For a spacious and handsome SUV, with 18 inch alloy wheels, it is not a thirsty beast with fuel consumption figures starting from 6.3L/100km for the Boxer diesel and 7.3L/100km for the petrol variants.
This year's impressive sales of the new generation 2015 version have been helped by the addition of Lineartronic diesel automatic variants that have brought even more appeal in rural and regional areas, where long-range dirt road driving puts Outback at a great advantage.
In fact, New Zealand hosts one in three roads that are more dirt than road, which explains why more Subarus are driven per capita in this country than anywhere else in the world. Outback really is the greatest car for the greatest Subaru drivers – New Zealanders!
Mr Dumper says that Subaru supply continues to be a challenge with worldwide demand making it vital to be forward ordering.
“Production planning schedules are stretched given countries like the USA sell more cars in week than we sell in a year. Whilst that can be a little humbling, we also recognise and have to remember that Subarus have always been a strong part of kiwi driving culture.”
“However, thanks to our long term efforts of marketing an exclusive All Wheel Drive model line-up and the huge number of used imports that are driven daily around our roads, New Zealand is actually the market in the world where Subaru is strongest by per capita.”
While the negotiations continue with Japan to supply more Subarus to the growing New Zealand customer base, Mr Dumper expects Outback “to carve a special place in our brand’s history in this country.”
“We believe that once we have finally satisfied the many Subaru customers on the waiting lists then we can start exposing the invisible advantages of our Symmetrical All Wheel Drive to the many drivers of other cars.”
“Yes we know not everyone may want a unique vehicle with a boxer engine and AWD but we also know that many people who have tried other brands have discovered some marques cost a lot to keep on the road and some SUV styled vehicles are pretenders with no AWD or simply drive like a truck. Yes, we think there are still a lot of opportunities out there for this record-breaking Outback,” he says.