A bear climbing out of an SUV after a deputy busted its back window.
GIF: The Orlando Sentinel

The Orlando Sentinel posted a viral video on Wednesday of a deputy busting out the window of an SUV with a bear trapped inside near Lake Tahoe. The story said the SUV was rocking back and forth as the bear was moving around in it, and the deputy who freed the bear ran away before it climbed out.

The SUV was, naturally, a Subaru Outback.

Bears break into cars a lot. One news story said officials in an unspecified area of Colorado estimate two to three bears get stuck in cars each week, and that some bears can even open unlocked door handles. The past three times we at Jalopnik have written about bears breaking into cars and shredding them like paper, all of them were Subarus. In those stories, we also linked to stories about other bears in other Subarus. All one bear did when it smelled donuts in a Ford Focus was rip the back bumper off, because screw Ford, right? The Subarus are where it’s at—for the bears, at least.

But why is that? The Jalopnik staff is not fit to answer this question alone. Most of the bloggers here live in New York City, which is decidedly lacking in bears, and the rest of us are sprinkled around the country in areas of California, Texas and Michigan that are also lacking in bears.

Thus, these are the potential reasons we came up with for bears and their love of breaking into Subarus, getting stuck, ripping the cars to pieces and either chewing on steering wheels or pooping everywhere as a result of nervousness:

  1. Do people in bear country just have more Subarus than other places in the world? It would make sense, given that Subaru is all “love” and “hipster” and “forest scenes in commercials” and “cars called the Forester.” Bears love forests.
  2. Do bears just like Subarus more than the other cars in bear country?
  3. Do Subaru owners lock their cars less than other car owners?
  4. Do all other car brands use some type of anti-bear spray?
  5. Is it because Subaru owners are more outdoorsy than other car owners, and therefore more likely to encounter bears on their fun outdoor adventures? Or is that what Subaru wants us to think?
  6. IS SUBARU PAYING THE BEARS FOR OUTDOORSY BRANDING?
  7. On a similar note, has Subaru figured out branding in the bear world? Is Subaru putting out bear ads with bear-market vehicles? Subaru has already done this with dogs. We should be suspicious of the motives here.
  8. Is bear word of mouth (roar of mouth?) contributing to this phenomenon? Do bears leave raving reviews on Bear Yelp or tell all of their friends about how fun the Subarus are to mess up?

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This is a very important investigation. We ask your time and cooperation in discovering the answers to the Bear Mystery. The unlocked, unattended Subarus of the world are counting on you.

And their owners, to, you know, lock the doors.