Skip to main content

Another Big Subaru Recall Affects 6-Year-Old And Older Vehicles Over Defective Airbags

Subaru issues another big recall affecting Forester, Outback, Impreza, Legacy, WRX, WRX STI, and Baja vehicles over Takata airbags already replaced. These are the Subarus that are being recalled for defective airbags. See if your vehicle is on the list.

Will the Takata airbag recall ever end? Subaru of America is recalling 2009-2013 Forester, 2003-2014 Outback, 2003-2014 Legacy, 2004-2011 Impreza, 2004-2014 WRX (including STI), 2003-2006 Baja, and 2005-2006 Saab 9-2X vehicles. This is for the Takata airbag recall affecting approximately 500,000 Subaru vehicles.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says in this first phase, Subaru is recalling 111,562 vehicles that previously had an interim repair performed under the current Takata recalls. Interim repairs also referred to as like-for-like repairs, involved the installation of a non-desiccated PSAN Takata-sourced inflator, prior to the availability of final repair parts that do not contain PSAN.

Subaru Outback is being recalled for defective Takata airbag2003-2014 Outback models are being recalled

This first phase recall covers Forester, Outback, Impreza, Legacy, WRX, WRX STI, and Baja vehicles originally sold, or ever registered, in the states of Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming or "Zone C."

If your vehicle listed above had its passenger frontal airbag inflators previously replaced under a prior recall, the inflators may explode due to propellant degradation occurring after long-term exposure to high absolute humidity, temperature, and temperature cycling.

Subaru Forester is also recalled for Takata airbag issue2009-2013 Subaru Forester

Why do I need my airbag replaced again?

The first recall was a temporary fix. Activation of a non-desiccated ammonium nitrate inflator with degraded propellant may result in an inflator rupture. An inflator rupture may cause metal fragments to pass through the airbag and into the vehicle interior at high speed, which may result in injury or death to vehicle occupants.

Based upon Takata’s investigation to date, the propellant wafers in some of the subject inflators may degrade over time, which could lead to over-aggressive combustion in the event the airbag is activated. Overly aggressive combustion creates excessive internal pressure when the inflator is activated, which may cause the inflator body to rupture.

What should customers do?

Subaru will notify Forester, Outback, Impreza, Legacy, WRX, WRX STI, and Baja owners. General Motors will notify Saab owners. Dealers will replace the passenger airbag inflators, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in January 2020. Subaru owners may contact Subaru customer service at 1-844-373-6614. Saab owners may contact the Saab Customer Assistance Center at 1-800-955-9007. Subaru's number for this recall is TKC-20. Torque News will let you know when Zone A and Zone B recalls are announced.

You Might Also Like: Use this Quick VIN Search Tool To See if Your Subaru is on the Takata Airbag Recall List

Also, let us know what are other safety topics that should be considered in light of this current 2020 Subaru defective airbag recall.

Denis Flierl has invested nearly 30 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. All of his reports are archived on our Subaru page. Follow Denis on FacebookTwitterInstagramSubaru Report. Check back tomorrow for more Subaru news and updates!

Leave your comments below, share the article with friends and tweet it out to your followers!

Photo credit: Subaru USA


Mike W (not verified)    January 8, 2020 - 4:03PM

Why is it only specific to the passenger side airbag? What makes it different from any of the other airbags throughout the vehicle (besides location in the car)? I have difficulty believing the defect is completely isolated to front passenger airbags. If a manufacturer is making one of them wrong, it seems reasonable that the same process is repeated for the other airbags throughout the vehicle.

Dennis Carey (not verified)    January 19, 2020 - 9:49PM

2015 crosstrek just drove back to Pa from Canada with temperature of -4 degrees Fahrenheit. For 5 hours of driving the windshield cracked and popped as if it was going to fly apart. We bought the car new and have 52000 miles on it. Have had it to Canada several times in the winter. This is the first time this has happened. It popped again today when the temperature was 20 degrees here at home. How concerned should I be? We've been talking about getting a new crosstrek. Have you heard of this problem?

Scott P (not verified)    June 2, 2021 - 2:48PM

Re-investigate the Takata recall. Have 2014 Outback, recall fixed, got into accident with passenger and NEITHER airbag deployed, NO airbag deployed--yes, we were going over 11 mph and it was injuries thankfully. Not sure if this is indicative of Subaru as a whole, or the CURRENTLY UNDISCLOSED SUBARU DEALERSHIP (but could be exposed if it's just the dealership's fault).