Subaru of America sales soared 60 percent last month and 29 percent through November, shattering last year's full-year sales record.
COO Tom Doll said Subaru likely will sell 330,000 vehicles in 2012, up 24 percent from the 266,989 units sold in 2011. Through November, Subaru sold 299,788 units.
"The products are sized and styled more for American tastes, and the price points have a lot of do with it -- plus all the segments we compete in are growing," Doll said in an interview with Automotive News last week at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
Subaru will sell more than 350,000 vehicles in 2013 -- 18 months ahead of the original target, Doll said. Yasuyuki Yoshinaga, president of Subaru-maker Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., said the unofficial sales target for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2016, is 400,000 units. He made the forecast in an Automotive News interview.
In November, Subaru said it sold 28,206 vehicles. Sales this year have been driven by the Impreza compact, Legacy sedan and Outback crossover. Sales of the Forester crossover, traditionally Subaru's second-best selling vehicle, were down 2 percent in November and flat through the 11 months because it is being phased out. The redesigned Forester goes on sale in March as a 2014 model.
Doll said sales were high despite tight inventory. Depending on the model, Subaru has a 35- to 40-day supply of vehicles, he said
Bill Cyphers, senior vice president of sales, said Subaru has "the industry's highest customer loyalty," but "we are also seeing record levels of first-time Subaru buyers -- which has significantly contributed to our sales growth this year."