Subaru Industrial Power Products announced March 8 that it will expand its market reach by offering customers a series of hydrostatic and mechanical axles. The axles fit on a range of small equipment such as utility vehicles, golf cars, walk-behind machines, turf equipment and mini-crawlers. Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) can incorporate the axles with Subaru’s line of gas-powered engines for a complete powertrain.
“Subaru has always been a leader in technology and innovation,” said David Frank, Subaru vice president of sales and marketing. “We brought the automotive technology of overhead cam to the small-engine market and revolutionized engine designs. This is one more area where we can share the technology and expertise of our sister division, Fuji Machinery, to bring substantial benefits to the equipment market.”
Fuji Machinery supplies Subaru automotive the transmission for the STI Sports car, as well as many components. Customers recognized Fuji Machinery’s capabilities to cut their own gears, and several OEMs inquired Subaru about its ability to manufacture axles.
Subaru responded by introducing a line of axles that includes 9 models that feature heavy-duty construction, forged gears, brass synchronizers, and built-in parking brakes or wheel brakes. The first axles were sold to manufacturers in the motorcycle, golf car and all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and utility-task vehicle (UTV) industries. Several axle models include bevel pinion gear-type differentials, and 2 of the axles are designed for use with electric drive systems.
Subaru expects to diversify into other gasoline-engine-driven applications in the outdoor power, concrete and light construction industries that benefit from adding axles.
“In the future, we want to offer customers a full Subaru powertrain,” Frank said. “This gives us the ability to meet customer demand and the versatility to move into more applications.”