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Historical Highlights

From the introduction of the Subaru 360 in 1958 to Subaru's three consecutive World Rally Championship (WRC) Manufacturers' Titles from 1995 to 1997, Subaru has a long history of engineering and motorsports achievement. Here's a quick look at some of Subaru's historical highlights:

1953

Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) is formed.

1954

FHI P-1 automotive prototype is unveiled.

1958

Subaru 360 is introduced, becoming an instant best-seller.

1965

Subaru 1000 is introduced, highlighted by the company's first use of a horizontally-opposed BOXER engine, which would later become an integral part of the Subaru symmetrical full-time All-Wheel Drive system.

1972

Debut of the Subaru Leone 4WD Station Wagon - the world's first mass-produced four-wheel drive passenger car.

1977

Subaru Brat, a recreational vehicle with a two-seater cabin and a small cargo bed, is launched, long before crossover vehicles would become mainstream.

1984

Debut of the economical Subaru Justy.

1986

Subaru full-time All-Wheel Drive is introduced in the third-generation Leone.

1987

World's first Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) - called the Subaru ECVT (Electro-Continuously Variable Transmission) -- is introduced in the Justy.

1989

The Subaru Legacy - which boasts both a horizontally-opposed SUBARU BOXER engine and the latest in Subaru All-Wheel Drive - is launched to critical acclaim.

1990

First full year of World Rally Championship (WRC) participation, using the Legacy WRC.

1991

Subaru SVX high-performance luxury coupe is introduced.

1992

Subaru introduces the Impreza, which boasted the same basic engine, suspension and All-Wheel Drive system as the Legacy, but in a smaller and sportier package.

1993

Subaru World Rally Team (SWRT) - behind the wheel of the Legacy WRC -- records its first WRC win. Later that season, SWRT switched from the Legacy WRC to the Impreza WRC.

1995

With the practicality and handling of a wagon and the safety and ground clearance of a sport utility vehicle, Subaru starts a new trend towards crossover vehicles with the introduction of the Outback.

1997

Subaru introduces the Forester, a compact sport utility vehicle offering the best of both worlds: the comfortable ride and handling of a sedan combined with the ruggedness of an SUV.

2003

The second-generation Forester earns the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's highest possible rating in three separate crash tests - the first vehicle in the compact sport utility vehicle class to accomplish the feat.

2004

Subaru introduces the all-new Legacy and Outback for the 2005 model year. Completely redesigned and re-engineered inside and out, the new Legacy and Outback feature more power and technological sophistication than ever before and stand as the first step in Subaru's quest to become a global premium brand.

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