The Ford Maverick Shows a New Subaru Baja Could Work

As more brands are entering the compact truck market, one manufacturer is notably absent. Subaru, a brand that once offered a small truck has not followed in the footsteps of Ford and Hyundai by issuing a new compact truck. In the past, the Subaru Baja was a quirky, yet practical pickup truck for those who did not need the capability of a full-size truck. The Baja was produced from 2002 until 2006, and with the success of the 2022 Ford Maverick, we feel like it deserves a comeback. 

Could Subaru make a new Baja truck?

A red Subaru Baja sits in a parking lot, showing off its compact size as a small truck.
Subaru Baja | IFCAR

With Subaru making a variety of models with features like all-wheel drive, it makes sense that a new Baja pickup truck could be in the works. Although, the brand has not released any information or intent to build a new truck. Subaru is a brand with a strong following, so undoubtedly a new Subaru Baja could see some major success.

We would have to assume that a new Baja would come with standard AWD and feature ample ground clearance, both of which are a staple for this brand. Additionally, Subaru has been adding a more rugged trim to multiple vehicles, known as the Wilderness trim. This could give a new Baja more capability when compared to the 2022 Ford Maverick.

Does Subaru have a truck?

Currently, Subaru does not offer a new truck. Though, with the new global platform, we do feel like a truck model will find great success. Especially if it boasted the type of capability seen by the Subaru Crosstrek and Subaru Outback. If a new Baja came with the same powertrain options as the Crosstrek, it could even be a small truck with a manual transmission. Something that the Ford Maverick and Hyundai Santa Cruz can not come equipped with. 

Another perk that this compact truck could see is Subaru’s off-road mode. According to J.D. Power, this drive mode is featured on multiple Subaru models and helps with navigating rugged terrain at low speeds. It is something that we would hope would be featured on a new Subaru Baja model.

Small trucks are back

A Ford Maverick pickup truck with grey paint drives up a remote road.
2022 Ford Maverick | Ford

The success of the 2022 Ford Maverick proves that when done right, compact trucks can sell. In fact, the Maverick has been so popular that Ford was forced to place a pause on orders for the 2022 model year. While part of that is due to current supply chain issues, it is also a reflection that buyers are interested in compact pickup trucks that offer an affordable price.

The 2022 Crosstrek has a starting price of just over $20,000. Hopefully, a pickup truck based on the Crosstrek would have a similar price point. That way, a new Baja could compete with the other compact trucks that are being sold. A major selling point of a Subaru truck would surely be standard AWD and heightened ground clearance. If the brand made a Baja Wilderness, it would likely become even more popular. And that is because in recent years, buyers have been attracted to vehicles with some off-road capability.

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