A whole new era is about to begin.
Subaru remains one of the few mainstream automakers lacking an all-electric vehicle in its lineup. This will soon change. The Japanese brand has just officially announced plans to launch its first-ever battery-electric in Europe in the very near future. An exact date was not provided, nor anything about its US market prospects.
As expected, this so far unnamed EV, which will be similar in size to the Subaru Forester, will share a platform with the recently announced upcoming Toyota and Lexus. This platform is Toyota's e-TNGA modular architecture specifically for EVs that can accommodate different sized vehicles and batteries. It can even be used for front, rear, or all-wheel-drive setups.
Because this is a Subaru, AWD is guaranteed with the BRZ remaining the sole exception to this rule. Like the Toyota and Lexus versions, it will feature a new Direct4 electric drive control system capable of controlling torque delivery between front and rear electric motors as well as braking at all four corners. The Lexus version will supposedly have an impressive 402 horsepower and 422 lb-ft of torque, though we doubt the Subaru will share this high output.
This isn't the first time Subaru and Toyota have collaborated on a major project; the first and second-generation BRZ and yet to be shown 86 are two past examples. Toyota also owns a 20 percent stake in Subaru.
Up until now, Subaru has only offered mild-hybrid versions of the Crosstrek and, in overseas markets, the Impreza and Forester. Over the past few weeks and months, an increasing number of countries have declared intentions to ban sales of new combustion-engined vehicles by the mid-2030s. The UK aims to do so by 2030. Only the state of California has declared so in the US but other states are expected to follow suit. Even Subaru's home country of Japan is strongly considering a similar plan.
This new Subaru EV should not be viewed as some niche model but rather the first of what will soon be an all-electric lineup.