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New Subaru Outback and Legacy Recall, Poor-Quality Welds May Compromise Body Strength

Subaru is hit with another recall. See what’s wrong now with some 2019 Subaru Outback and Legacy models and check if your vehicle is affected.

Subaru of America has issued another recall for certain new 2019 Outback SUV and 2019 Legacy sedan models built at the U.S. plant in Lafayette, Indiana. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says spot welds located on the duct below the cowl panel may have been improperly applied, impacting the vehicle's body strength. In the event of a crash, the reduced strength of the vehicle body may increase the risk of injury.

There are a total of 2,107 vehicles affected with most of them being new 2019 Outback models. The number of affected Outback vehicles is 1,965. The recall population includes certain 2019 model year Legacy vehicles. The number of affected Legacy vehicles is 142. Affected vehicles will need to be returned to the U.S. factory for repair and customers will have the option of getting a new vehicle. This now raises new concerns with the quality of the new 2020 Outback model change.

2020 Subaru OutbackThe problem

The NHTSA says during the manufacturing process at Subaru’s Indiana factory where the Outback, Legacy, Ascent, and Impreza are manufactured, the spot-welder tip on the body assembly line, is supposed to be cleaned and re-shaped by a dresser (grinding machine). During the production of some Outback and Legacy models, the grinding machine may have been blocked by excess metal chips/powder, thus reducing the effectiveness of the welder.

2019 Subaru OutbackThe remedy

Subaru dealers will be required to inspect the duct for the “B” line identification mark. If the part was produced on the affected line, the spot-welds will be inspected by a Subaru manufacturer’s representative. If certain spot-welds are improperly applied, the vehicle will be returned to the Subaru Indiana Automotive factory for repair. If a customer vehicle is confirmed as containing an affected part, the customer will have the option of “exchanging the vehicle, repurchase or having the vehicle returned to the manufacturing facility for repair at no cost,” according to the recent recall report by NHTSA.

2019 Subaru OutbackWhat should customers do?

Subaru will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the 2019 Outback and Legacy models and repair or repurchase the vehicle, as necessary, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin on July 26, 2019. Owners may contact Subaru customer service at 1-844-373-6614. Subaru's number for this recall is WUH-93.

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Photo credit: Subaru USA, NHTSA


Teresa (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 6:29PM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

Yes, very much as I'm waiting patiently for me to place the order but now I will wait until next May to see what problems they will have. I am buying my second one because of safety features. That's why I got my daughter and parents to purchased. I researched for 1 year and compared between other brand names . NOW. I am extremely concerned if they are cutting corners that's not good and if they cut quality of material been used . I may have to wait or go with my second choice Volvo.

jg (not verified)    July 27, 2019 - 10:23PM

In reply to by Teresa (not verified)

You should be impressed with the integrity the company has to offer a straight-up replacement vehicle for something they could easily have "legally" just offered a repair to correct (giving you a loaner while the affected vehicle was shipped to Indiana for disassembly and repair). That's one of the things that keeps Subaru brand loyalty.

Chris D (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 7:34PM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

My 2012 Outback never had a SINGLE problem. My 2018 Outback has already had a major repair and it's overall quality is very poor. The entertainment system is a nightmare, i ran out of gas when the car said it had 50 miles to go, constant rattles, etc

Steven Marchand (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 9:32PM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

Yes. The company used to be quality 1st, which in turn attracted customers and drove profits. Now, I suspect that they're pushing volume and profits and in the rush those who once had the time to be concerned about quality are being pushed by the company's new prime focus - profits. It's a slippery slope which darn near tanked the entire United States homegrown Auto Industry in the 70's and 80's. It got so bad that they even had to make a big deal out of the "quality first", which had once been a hallmark. It's why and how the Japanese and German Auto Industries almost totally ate our lunch before we once again started getting it right. It's the problem with the 21st century business model of greed above all else.

Jimmy G. (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 2:13PM

Subaru has a reputation for safety and quality. My 2018 Outback stopped running because a rodent damaged the fuel sensor electrical line. The Outback’s computer read the gas tank as empty (was 3/4 full) and decided to shut off the fuel pump when running in traffic. If a Subaru’s gas warning light comes on, do not attempt to drive the car, it’s extremely dangerous! I’m going back to Honda.

Redfox (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 8:41PM

In reply to by Jimmy G. (not verified)

You sound stupid in your comment. So a problem that was caused by an animal is making you change car brands..
Oh I hit a deer with my honda better change to a Nissan.

"Subarus are great" mine was eaten by a animal .. better go to honda..
People are stupid...
This happens esp in crap american plants . Our workers are shit sometimes for quality control.

James Murdock (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 9:05PM

In reply to by Jimmy G. (not verified)

That seems like a pretty sketchy basis for ditching one brand for another. Do you know that Honda does not have this feature of shutting off the pump when it thinks the gas tank is empty? Do you also know that Honda has zero other features that, when impaired by a rodent, might cause the engine to shut off?

Redfox (not verified)    July 13, 2019 - 2:50AM

In reply to by James Murdock (not verified)

I don't car what feature a car has if you cut power to the fuel pump the engine DIES period!! if you cut signal to it, it will die. if you cut the ground it dies.. I.E. if a animal eats the line the pump dies...
I would be the same thing as saying .. oh i took my scissors and cut some wires Under and around the car why wont the (insert any car feature here) work?? i think ill change companies.. wtf??

Adam (not verified)    July 13, 2019 - 6:39AM

In reply to by Jimmy G. (not verified)

Maybe you should worry about your rat problem, Jimmy. Or was your expectation that the manufacturer of your vehicle take the time to de-rodentify your property at the time of purchase? You're right up there with the rest of the people on this forum. "I neglected an extremely complicated piece of machinery and it broke. [Insert manufacturer here] is terrible!"

Jesse (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 3:23PM

Not concerned in the least. Not on my radar for purchase. But I do feel for those drivers who have purchased one. BTW, my 2009 Toyota Corolla, made in Japan, was recalled numerous times to fix areas of concern.

CHRISTOPHER SONIAK (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 4:32PM

I own a 2017 Outback that been in to the dealer twice for warranty work attempting to fix tapping sounds coming from the unibody. It's in a different place then described in this article but the production issue is likely systemic... my opinion.

Christopher D (not verified)    July 12, 2019 - 7:30PM

I regret buying my new Outback tremendously. The quality is poor. I have already had my entire front steering assembly replaced because it was loose causing the car to jump left and right. Luckily that was part of a different recall. It seems like every few months i get a notice that I am part of some recall. This never happened with my previous Subaru Outback. Something has gone rotten with Subaru.

Jim Walsh (not verified)    July 29, 2019 - 6:24AM

In reply to by Ricky (not verified)

Actually MOST Subarus are made in Indiana. Foresters are made in Japan. I think the BRZ and WRX are also made in Japan. All Legacy, Outback, Impreza, and Ascent vehicles are assembled in Indiana.

R Lowe (not verified)    July 13, 2019 - 11:03AM

I switched from Toyota to Subaru. I have had several, and very few problems. I must say I hope Subaru gets their act together, and starts having more quality control here at the Subaru plant in the USA. This long string of popularity is going to change quickly if they don't. I really love the Subaru brand, and looking forward to the new WRX, as I have always wanted one. I currently have a 2018 Outback, and the only issue was replacing the seat frame on the driver side. No infotainment problems, or anything else. It is a great ride, and I still feel very safe !

Holger Kuehn (not verified)    July 13, 2019 - 1:14PM

I do rather get a recall and they don’t try to hide it,I remember the Ford ,Firestone nightmare cover up.Unfortunatly cars getting so much more complex every day.

Subidobedo (not verified)    July 13, 2019 - 9:12PM

Never buy any Subaru older than 2015. We have a 2007 Forester, a 2013 Legacy and had a 2002 Subaru Wagon and only had the regular normal maintenance issues.
According to an ex-employee at Putnam Subaru, the new name of the game is profit from needed and un-needed repairs. It is really sad and best way to avoid those charges is to go to a trusted non-dealer repair shop. The current joke at the dealership is that they hired the designer of the new program from Boeing who was in charge of the 737 Max.