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Subaru Announces Another New Ascent Family Hauler Recall This For A Transmission Defect

The new 2019 Subaru Ascent is being recalled the second time this week. See what could happen to the transmission.

The all-new 2019 Subaru Ascent his recalled for the second time in two days, this time over a possible automatic transmission defect. Torque News reported yesterday, the 2019 Ascent, Forester, and Crosstrek were being recalled for a defective PCV valve that could potentially cause engine failure.

Today’s announced recall affects 76,842 Ascent family haulers according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This is the total number of 2019 models produced since it started production last year at the U.S. plant in Lafayette, Indiana. The new Ascent is made for customers in North America and is not sold in any other global market.

2019 Subaru Ascent transmission recall2019 Subaru Ascent

What is the issue?

Subaru of America says the transmission hydraulic sensor may inaccurately measure the hydraulic fluid pressure, and the Continually Variable Transmission (CVT) chain may slip in Ascent 3-Row vehicles. If the chain slips there could be irregular noise, vibration, hesitation while driving, and/or a malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) illumination. If driving under this condition continues, the vehicle may experience a loss of power, increasing the risk of a crash.

Subaru estimates all 2019 Ascent models are affected by this CVT automatic transmission glitch. Subaru is aware of 241 dealer and non-dealer field report complaints, and 14 Vehicle Owner Questionnaires that have said they have experienced this transmission problem. Subaru says they are not aware of any cases involving crash or injury as a result of this condition.

Although the early warning symptoms appear to be detectable by the vehicle occupants prior to complete performance degradation, out of caution, Subaru decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall. This recall will affect all models sold in the U.S. and Canada.

2019 Subaru Ascent CVT transmission recall2019 Subaru Ascent family hauler

What should owners do?

Subaru of America will notify owners within 60 days, and dealers will reprogram the transmission control unit. The hydraulic sensor harness will be replaced on vehicles with certain stored diagnostic trouble codes. In addition, any vehicle confirmed to have experienced low drive chain tension will have the transmission assembly replaced. All repairs will be performed free of charge.

The new 2019 Subaru Ascent recall is expected to begin on January 24, 2020. Owners may contact Subaru customer service at 1-844-373-6614. Subaru's number for this recall is WUV-07.

You Might Also Like: New Ascent Family SUV Drags Subaru Down In Consumer Reports Reliability Rankings

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!

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Photo credit: Subaru USA


Jack Brown (not verified)    December 15, 2019 - 8:09AM

As someone who owns a 2014 Subaru Forester and has had more than what i consider to be a fair share of problems--oil consumption, wheel bearings, muffler, upholstery separating, axle replacement--forthdcoming, electronic sensors, air conditioning, etc, etc, (in excess of $7000 spent on maintenance and repairs in the five years of leasing/owing it--and likely more to come) i am unlikely to ever buy a Subaru again. It is an okay car to drive BUT a nightmare to keep it looked after. Recently I had friends who asked me about Subaru--convinced of their buying decision but just seeking "My" opinion. They bought a Mazda CX5. Not the worst vehicle I have ever owned--that was the 1996 Lumina but it was a $17000 car not $34000 like the Subaru. Want to get a graphic for the rear window "Subaru--Japanese for" then have an emoji of a garb age can.

Dynamic Dave (not verified)    December 19, 2019 - 11:44AM

I drove a 2011 Subaru Forester for 4 years with no problems at all. Just changed the oil, brakes & tires. It was such a great vehicle. Great visibility and fantastic in inclement weather. I've recently purchased a 2019 Subaru Ascent. I'm 15,000 miles in and no complaints so far. Love the interior and the power. Sorry to hear about your experience. I feel lucky I guess.

Alo Gonz (not verified)    December 26, 2019 - 7:31AM

CVT Transmissions...problematic, unreliable, cheap junk. The only way I would buy a Subaru, Nissan, Honda, etc. is with a manual transmission. Had my share of problems with CVT's and for maybe an extra MPG, it's definitely not worth it.

Patricio Reyes (not verified)    July 27, 2020 - 8:11PM

I bought Ascent 2019 with transmission problems. I was traveling from NYC to PA with my family, noticing I was losing power, going uphills and I was hearing whining noise. When the transmission died in the middle nowhere, my whole family was at risk. We almost got hit by a truck and I had to put out my emergency light and pull over to the right to avoid an accident. So we call tow trucks. When they arrived, the tow truck driver was allowed to take 1 person and we had to let him go. We have called our family member to pick us up waiting for 5 hours in the middle of nowhere. We called the tow truck again to take the Ascent to the dealer, that was a Sunday and drop the car there. After 2 months I got the Ascent back. Unfortunately Subaru, thanks for fixing the Ascent but I can take another risk and specially with my kids. Once my lease expires, I will return it back to the dealer. My next vehicle must not be CVT transmission.

Kalle Fletcher (not verified)    October 5, 2020 - 10:55PM

In reply to by Patricio Reyes (not verified)

I saw your comment about your Ascent. I just picked up my 2019 Ascent from Subaru service. They had to replace the transmission. Not what I expected to do with a new vehicle!
I’m considering going through the “Lemon Law” and am wondering if you thought about doing that as well? (Maybe you can’t with a lease??) My concern is that the new transmission is going to have similar issues but at that point it won’t be under warranty. I‘ve had too many problems with this vehicle and I’m frustrated! Safety was a major selling point for me, but I haven’t been feeling very safe!
Have you had any other issues come up?

R. J. Olmen (not verified)    December 12, 2020 - 6:43PM

December 12, 2020

I've had my 2021 Subaru Ascent for only 6 weeks. Since owning it, I've experienced Transmission hesitation, irregular acceleration and random engine Tachometer winding during speeds of 40 mph and below. Nothing seems smooth. The Wheels and the Engine can be heard from below the floor boards. I found this Ascent on Car Fax, as "previously owned, one owner, no accidents etc, and with only 601 Miles on it. Previous owner had it for just a few months, and traded it in for a Toyota. I thought this beautiful vehicle with good pricing was too good to be true. It's my 4th Subaru in 45 years - I've always owned Subaru Outbacks - and never ever had these issues. This particular 2021 Ascent has me very my Dashboard Panel Indicators had very random warning lights come up. I had touched nothing at all when Eye Sight Off, and Lane Departure Off Sensor Lights appeared. I'm very disappointed and again, very concerned. I've been trying to wait and see what this is all about but today's sensor indicator issue, is telling me to wait no longer.

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