Subaru WRX And BRZ Sales Have Absolutely Cratered This Year

Photo: Subaru
Photo: Subaru

It’s the first workday of the month of June, which means it’s time for the automakers who so graciously still report monthly sales on a monthly basis to show us their spreadsheets. For Subaru, it wasn’t all bad, but it sure wasn’t great, either, especially for the folks who work on the performance side of things. So far in 2024, sales of the WRX have dropped 39 percent compared to the first five months of 2023, and BRZ sales dropped even further. Year-over-year, the BRZ is down a full 45 percent.

The month of May, itself, was also pretty bad for WRX and BRZ sales. The former moved 39.6 percent fewer units than in May of 2023, and BRZ sales were down a whopping 64.4 percent. So while the 1,673 WRXes sold in May isn’t exactly a huge number, Subaru only ended up selling 227 BRZs last month.

Meanwhile, in the same time period, Toyota GR86 sales...well, we can’t actually tell you because Toyota releases its sales reports quarterly. You don’t mind waiting another month for that information, right? While not necessarily a true 1:1 comparison, the Mazda MX-5 Miata is probably the most direct competitor that we have May sales data for (thanks, monthly reporting!), and its sales are down, too. Year-to-date sales were down 30.5 percent, while May sales were down 12.3 percent.


So at least with the Miata, we can see that Subaru’s not the only automaker selling a semi-affordable, lightweight sports car that’s seen sales drop this year. The overall drop hasn’t been as severe, though, and Mazda still sold 956 Miatas last month, finding more than four times as many buyers as Subaru did for the BRZ. If monthly sales continue to be this low, you have to wonder how long Subaru can continue to justify selling the BRZ in the States.

As far for the WRX, it also doesn’t have much direct competition. The closest you can get is probably the Hyundai Elantra N, and Hyundai doesn’t break out N sales from the regular Elantra. It’s possible the Elantra N is stealing some of Subaru’s WRX sales, but aside from high interest rates and wage increases not coming anywhere close to covering inflation, we suspect the bigger issue is what Subaru has done with the WRX itself.

The WRX’s styling has gotten plenty of criticism, but looks haven’t exactly held bad the WRX before. Instead, we’d suggest that, in trying to attract buyers who might have otherwise bought something like a BMW 3 Series, the WRX lost its way a little. The WRX name isn’t premium enough to attract a luxury car buyer, and the more grown-up version isn’t WRX enough for Subaru’s typical audience. Maybe the introduction of the STI-tuned WRX tS will help turn things around, but we can’t say we’re confident that will actually happen.

H/T: Motor1

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