Sustainability

Subaru Loves the Earth campaign marks recycling milestone, extends TerraCycle partnership

Subaru dealerships have recycling items for years through the Subaru Loves the Earth campaign.

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

Subaru's environmentally-focused philanthropic platform, Subaru Loves the Earth, part of the larger Subaru Loves mission, is celebrating a milestone. The recycling effort championed by the campaign has recycled more than five million disposable cups and lids, coffee, tea, and creamer capsules and snack wrappers over the last four years.

To mark to the accomplishment, Subaru has announced an extension to its partnership with TerraCycle. "At Subaru, we feel a responsibility to protect Earth's natural wonders for future generations to enjoy, and our partnership with TerraCycle helps us fulfill that commitment while also getting our community and customers involved," said Thomas J. Doll, President and CEO, Subaru of America, Inc. "When it comes to protecting and preserving our environment, we're all in this together, and Subaru is proud to offer ways for people to get excited about recycling."

ASPCA Subaru Dog Kissing Booth Subaru activates their Subaru Loves campaigns throughout the country including Subaru Loves Pets kissing booths at auto shows.Photo courtesy of the ASPCA and Subaru of America, Inc.

The program utilizes TerraCycle Zero Waste Boxes at 590 participating Subaru retailers nationwide, offering customers, employees, and community partners a way to recycle waste that is traditionally thought of as being hard to recycle like snack wrappers/bags, disposable cups, lids, plastic straws, as well as coffee, tea and creamer capsules. Subaru encourages customers to collecting these waste streams at their home and bring them into a local participating Subaru retailer for recycling.

Once collected, the waste is transformed into recycled products, including park benches, picnic tables, and playground materials. Subaru retailers can also order products made from the recycled materials through an exclusive Subaru product-line, produced in conjunction with TerraCycle, to be donated to community organizations.

"At TerraCycle, our mission has always been to eliminate waste, recycle the unrecyclable and use our innovative business solutions to minimize human impact on the planet," said Tom Szaky, TerraCycle CEO. "As we move into the fourth year of our partnership with Subaru, we look forward to building on our previous success and continuing to inspire local communities to take action to preserve the environment for future generations."

New for 2021, 225 participating Subaru retailers will be collecting cabin air filters and plastic film in their service areas for recycling. Additionally, Subaru and TerraCycle will also continue their nationwide recycling partnership with REI. Since 2019, Subaru has provided co-branded TerraCycle collection boxes at all REI stores across the country.

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What was your best car-related experience this year?

Chris Teague

This year has been a lot of things, but it hasn't been boring. Even if we focus only on the car world, there's plenty to talk about, from microchip-related new vehicle shortages to the wave of new electric vehicles hitting the market. That leaves us with a question for all of you: What was the best or most memorable car moment for you in 2021? I'll get the conversation started.

Porsche Cayenne GTS My SoCal Cayenne śaw snow for the first time in its nearly 200k-mile life last week.Chris Teague

I'd spent a good portion of 2021 wanting a new-old car to drive when I wasn't testing a new vehicle. That's harder than you'd think for someone who thinks, talks, and writes about cars all day, because there are so many interesting, risky, and downright funky options out there in every price range. The added headache for me was that I'd chosen to shop for a "fun" car in one of the most volatile car markets ever seen. Even the extremely high-mileage "untouchable" European cars I wanted to buy were commanding ridiculous prices.

After a solid few months of waffling between various rattletrap Mercedes-AMG, BMW M, and Audi S/RS cars, I landed on an option that had escaped me before: The Porsche Cayenne. First-generation Cayennes are a real bargain now, but the 955/957 (Porsche's internal code for the SUVs) can experience major problems that occur with or without regular maintenance and care. I was determined to buy one, and wasn't overly concerned about mileage, as long as I could count the number of owners on one hand. There was a beautiful 2009 Cayenne GTS with 90,000 miles but nine owners, a gorgeous 2004 Cayenne Turbo with a concerning engine tick, and many more just like them. Finally, I decided to risky-click a 196,000-mile Cayenne GTS in Southern California. It had one owner and one dealer-owner for a month or two prior to sale, its condition looked decent in photos, and I was able to negotiate a reasonable enough price that shipping it from San Diego to Maine wasn't a huge problem.

Porsche Cayenne GTS The pics look great, but hands-on tells another story.Chris Teague

I had two traveling Euro mechanics check the car out, and both confirmed that it was well-worn but mechanically sound, so I jumped. Ten days later, on a snowy, icy, dark Maine afternoon, the Cayenne arrived. Cosmetically, there were a few things the dealer and mechanics failed to mention, but overall, it looked good. The SUV passed Maine safety and emissions testing without problem, got a new set of Michelins, and I was on my way.

Porsche Cayenne GTS I'm in danger, but thankfully this should be a reasonable fix.Chris Teague

A few days of driving revealed what I was really in for. A check engine light revealed a camshaft position sensor error and the Cayenne displayed a nasty vibration at idle. A new sensor and motor mounts, and I'm on my way. I'll update you as more things break or miraculously work, but I want to hear your memories from 2021.

Email me at chris@automotivemap.com, and I will compile the best and most interesting stories for a story on New Year's Day. May you all have a wonderful 2022.

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The Solterra is Subaru's first EV.

Subaru

Months of teases and rumors are over, as Subaru has just taken wraps off of its Solterra electric SUV. The EV was developed in conjunction with Toyota, whose own electrified SUV debuted earlier this year. Subaru unveiled the SUV at an event in Japan, and while the U.S. version won't be shown until next week, this international reveal gives us a great idea of what we'll see.

Subaru Solterra The Solterra is nearly identical to the Toyota bZ4X in several key areas.Subaru

Since Subaru worked jointly with Toyota on the EV program, the Solterra is more than a close relative of Toyota's bZ4X – it's nearly identical, down to the powertrain. Up front, the Subaru EV splits from its Toyota counterpart with fake grille panels, but the vehicle's sides and overall shape are practically interchangeable. The Solterra's interior is almost a mirror image of the bZ4X, but there's no yoke steering wheel.

The Japanese specs aren't remarkable, but they're nothing to sneeze at, either. The crossover comes with a 71.4 kWh battery that should deliver a 250-mile range by EPA standards. Two drivetrains are offered, including a front-wheel drive version with a 150-kW motor and an all-wheel drive model with two 80-kW motors.

Subaru Solterra Subaru will show the Solterra at the LA Auto Show next week.Subaru

Subaru will announce the North American version of the Solterra next week at the Los Angeles Auto Show. There may be minor differences in equipment and appearance, but the Subaru EV we see here should be close to the vehicle shown off in Japan. Subaru says that Solterra deliveries will start in mid-2022.

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