Subaru swam against the ebbing new car sales tide in 2008, lifting its worldwide volume by 5.4 percent, to 616,497
It was the eighth consecutive year the brand has increased its sales worldwide.
Subaru says strong Forester compact SUV sales in all major markets and the introduction of diesel Legacy and Outback models in Europe were major contributors to the success.
The new hatch Impreza, which was launched in 2007, also provided strong growth in North America, and the Exiga seven-seat Sports Wagon that debuted in Japan, also sold strongly.
Most – 524,916 – were built in Japan, with the remaining 91,581 made in Indiana, USA, mainly for the North American market, although the factory also builds right hand drive Tribecas.
Sales in the United States, Canada, Australia and major European markets all increased in 2008.