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Why The Subaru SVX Was A Complete Flop
By ALEX HEVESY
For a brief time in the 1990s, Subaru offered a sleek grand tourer, designed by legendary Italian designer Giorgetto Giugiaro, that sat miles above every other Subaru offered at the time, not only in style but also in price. The Subaru SVX was produced from 1992 to 1997, and was, to date, Subaru's only real luxury-focused car — however, it was a complete failure.
It had bizarre windows which, according to Subaru, were designed in such a way that they didn't make any noise when the windows were down. Mechanically, it was powered by a characteristically Subaru 3.3L flat-six "boxer" engine that put out a healthy 230 horsepower, and all but a few early models were all-wheel drive.
At an MSRP of nearly $36,000, it was significantly more expensive than any other Subaru at the time and had an automatic transmission, because a manual transmission could not effectively put up with the SVX without liquifying itself. A hefty price tag and somewhat weak transmission spelled a sales disaster for Subaru — the brand only sold around 14,000 SVXs during its short life.