|Body versions :||Sedan , station wagon , convertible|
Otto engines : 0.36–0.42 liters
|Empty weight :||444 kg|
The Subaru 360 was a two-door small car produced by the Japanese car manufacturer Subaru from 1958 to 1971 and was also the brand's first large-scale model.
Concept and technology
Visually, the Subaru 360 had basic similarities with the VW Beetle and Fiat Nuova 500 , but technically more with the Goggomobil (2-stroke) and had a comparable role in the motorization of the Japanese population. His Japanese nickname is cockchafer in German . Its air-cooled two-cylinder two-stroke engine sat in the rear and drove the rear wheels; however, the Subaru was much less successful than the Beetle in terms of numbers. At 356 cm³, the cubic capacity was just below the upper limit of 360 cm³ which was valid until the end of 1975 for the small cars ( kei cars ) that were tax-privileged in Japan .
Other technical features included a self-supporting body with a roof made of glass fiber reinforced plastic (wheelbase: 1800 mm), drum brakes all around and a 3-speed gearbox. From the mid-1960s, it was also possible to order a four-speed transmission with a fourth gear designed as an overdrive . The doors hinged at the back are striking. The first model also had only one windshield wiper on the driver's side.
Initially the engine of the 360 made 16 hp. The range was later expanded with the 23 hp 423 cm³ engine (the 450, internal K212). With the latter engine, the car reached a top speed of about 90 km / h and accelerated to 80 km / h in about 36 seconds. The standard consumption of 3.6 liters per 100 kilometers specified by the factory could not be achieved in practice; a value of 8.4 liters was determined in the test.
In addition to the two-door sedan, there was a station wagon ( 360 Custom ), a convertible and two different sports versions. The 360 Young S had a slightly more powerful engine, tachometer and a black roof with white trim. The 360 Young SS came up with a 36 hp twin carburetor engine. In 1961, a pickup truck derived from the 360, the Subaru Sambar, was introduced .
The Subaru 360 was also briefly imported to the USA by Malcolm Bricklin in 1968-1970 , but without any notable success. Production ended in May 1970. 392,016 models of the 360 and 450 were made.
- Chauvin, Xavier: Japanese Automobiles. The most iconic models from 1960 to 1975 . Heel-Verlag, Königswinter 2007; here: p. 137f.
- Road & Track Road Test Annual for 1970, pp. 125ff.