Subaru eyes production halt for 3 models over engine issues

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Subaru Corp. may soon suspend production of three mainstay vehicle models, following the discovery of an issue with an engine used in them, it was learned Friday.

The Japanese automaker has already stopped shipments of the vehicles equipped with the engine in question.

With Subaru already forced to scale back its auto production due to worldwide semiconductor shortages and other factors, the suspension of production and sales of the automaker’s popular vehicle models is expected to hit its earnings.

According to Subaru, a malfunction was found in a sensor component of its 1.8-liter horizontally opposed CB18 engine.

The engine is used in Subaru’s Outback and Forester SUVs, and its Levorg station wagon sold in Japan. A total of 54,000 vehicles using the engine have been sold since October 2020.

The engine is not used in vehicles sold in countries outside Japan.

Subaru will stop production at its Gunma and Yajima plants, both in Gunma Prefecture, in late April to look into the cause of the engine issue.

The automaker may recall vehicles, depending on what it finds in the investigation.

Subaru sold 50,000 vehicles of the three models, including vehicles not using the affected engine, in Japan in 2021, accounting for around 50% of the company’s total domestic sales.