TOKYO -- Subaru Corp. expects slumping U.S. sales to finally rebound in 2022, but only after two-straight years of declines, the brand's first back-to-back sales retreat since the mid-1990s.
CEO Tomomi Nakamura, in a Thursday interview, told Automotive News that sales in the Japanese automaker's most important market aren't expected to reach 600,000 units in 2021.
Such a total would fall short of the 611,942 vehicles Subaru sold in the U.S. in calendar year 2020, when its volume slumped 12.6 percent in the throes of the pandemic from an all-time high set in 2019.
Demand in 2021 has been further reduced by the global semiconductor shortage.
Through October, Subaru's U.S. sales were static, with the brand notching a 0.3 percent increase to 499,619 vehicles.
"We'll have to consider orders after the Thanksgiving holiday, but we're looking at a little more difficult situation than in previous months," Nakamura said of the U.S. sales outlook. "For the calendar year, we're expecting a number that is below 600,000."