Subaru looks to distinguish ‘Toyobaru’

Other News Materials 23 April 2008 06:26 (UTC +04:00)

Subaru bosses in Japan are apparently concerned that the 2011 rear-drive coupe that it's co-developing with Toyota could 'cannibalise' sales. ( AC )

Mat Nagato, chief of overseas sales at parent company Fuji Heavy Industries told reporters that "we may lose our longstanding territory, or we may lose the great niche brand image. The potential risk is there. We have to be very smart on marketing strategy."

Autocar exclusively revealed details of the joint venture last month, which will produce two different looking coupes underpinned by the same platform, with both being powered by Subaru's boxer engines.

But Subaru is understandably concerned that the Toyota-badged front-engined, rear-drive coupe - which could become the next Celica - will be the dominant seller.

Going head-to-head against Toyota with what is essentially the same car is going to be a tough battle for Subaru, hence the serious consideration of ways to make its version stand out.