Subaru has worked hard to brand itself as an eco-friendly car company. Today, that reputation gets a boost from six new, digital brochures touting Subaru's 2012 lineup of vehicles.
The brochures are available for the 2012 Impreza, Impreza WRX/STI, Legacy, Outback, Forester, and Tribeca -- just visit the Subaru website and select the vehicle you'd like to review. (There are 2011 brochures available, too, if you're interested.)
After the flash file has opened in your browser, you'll find an abundance of clickable material. There's plenty of stuff you'd expect to find -- previews of exterior paint colors, interior trim finishes, and such -- but there are also nice bonuses, like short reviews from owners and experts, illustrations of the suspension in action, and cutaway views showing storage and safety features. There are also a series of videos that highlight Subaru's community outreach activities (like the company's partnership with the ASPCA) and discuss the "Subaru lifestyle".
Could you get that info from a traditional brochure? Much of it, yes, but it wouldn't be nearly as fun to look at. And of course, it would require a lot of added paper.
Still, Subaru understands that the world isn't ready for digital-only auto brochures -- not just yet, anyway. Apart from the browser versions, Subaru offers visitors the chance to download its conventional brochures as PDF and to order print versions by mail. There are also iPhone apps for certain models, like the 2012 Forester, Impreza, and Outback.
This digital push follows hot on the heels of two other Subaru initiatives -- the latest series of "Dog Tested, Dog Approved" commercials that coincided with Super Bowl XLVI, and of course, the nifty online storytelling site we mentioned last week, FirstCarStory.com. From where we sit, it looks as if Subaru has set 2012 as the year to expand beyond its base of hardcore supporters and steal market share from the bigger boys. Stay tuned.