Filed under: Classics, Subaru
Fuji Heavy Industries, parent company of Subaru, celebrated its 60th anniversary on June 15. And while the company is largely known in the automotive world for its innovative all-wheel-drive cars, its history stretches far back before the days of symmetrical all-wheel drive, World Rally Blue and gold wheels.
FHI was founded, much like Germany's BMW, as an aircraft company. It went through a series of names before settling on its current title in 1953. And while its aerial successes were never quite as famous as Mitsubishi and its Zero, FHI did fly Japan's first jet-powered trainer. The same year, 1958 to be exact, it unveiled the iconic Subaru 360 minicar. While the 360 never quite caught on in the US (at least not with the fervor of the similarly laid-out Volkswagen Beetle), the small, affordable and simple Subie had a wide-ranging appeal across the island of Japan.
The rear-drive, rear-engined 360 was eventually joined by the 1000, Subaru's first front-engine, front-wheel-drive car. More importantly, the 1000 ushered in Subaru's use of a horizontally opposed engine. The Subaru Leone, which arrived in 1971, expanded on the 1000, by offering a combination we're all familiar with nowadays - all-wheel drive with a flat-four engine.
So, if you want to know which cars to thank for that trick center differential in your Impreza WRX STI or the road-holding ability of your Legacy wagon, you can look back on these three cars. Have a gander at some of Subaru's most noteworthy machines in the high-res gallery above, and read more from Subaru in the press release below.Continue reading Subaru parent company celebrates 60th birthday
Subaru parent company celebrates 60th birthday originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 18 Jul 2013 08:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
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