While most car makers have been announcing their grand plans for electric and hybrid cars, Fuji Heavy Industries which own Subaru, has been noticeably silent.
It seems that Fuji wanted to produce a hybrid Subaru based on Toyota’s technology. Toyota is the largest shareholder in Subaru with a 16% stake and the two companies have a long-standing agreement to share development costs. However, Toyota was very reluctant to share the technology which has made the Prius the market leader.
That attitude seems to have changed now that all manufacturers will have to produce more efficient vehicles if they are to participate in the American market.
Fuji has announced that it will be releasing a hybrid model, using Toyota’s technology, in 2012 as well as a fuel-efficient diesel model in 2011 or 2012.
Subaru is also testing an electric car with a range extending petrol motor, the R1e, which is similar in size to the Smart car and has a range of 80 kilometres on batteries alone.
(Based on sources including The Japan Times