Subaru of America’s battery drain lawsuit has reached a final settlement. Subaru of America (SOA) has been battling an issue with drained batteries on the Outback midsize SUV, Forester compact SUV, Ascent SUV, Legacy sedan, and WRX sports car. The first lawsuit from 2020 and a second class action in 2021 against SOA alleged the Subaru vehicles had defective electrical systems causing premature battery failure. Now owners will be compensated.
A recent report from Bloomberg Law (by subscription) says the terms of the nationwide class settlement include payments for out-of-pocket repair costs up to 165 percent of the expenditure, warranty extensions, and a software update that improves the on-board computer’s “charging logic,” according to earlier filings in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.
The deal is fair, reasonable, and adequate, Judge Joseph H. Rodriguez said Tuesday. He also approved $4.1 million in attorneys’ fees and expenses.
Which models are affected by the Settlement?
According to the Subaru battery settlement website, the Subaru vehicles in the lawsuit settlement include the 2015-2020 Subaru Outback, 2015-2020 Subaru Forester, 2015-2020 Subaru Legacy sedan, 2015-2020 Subaru WRX, and 2019-2020 Subaru Ascent 3-Row SUVs.
What does the Settlement provide?
1. Extended warranty service for qualifying battery failures experienced on or after the Date of the Notice. The Settlement also provides, where applicable, cash reimbursement for:
2. Battery replacements and related battery testing and diagnosis performed by an Authorized Subaru Retailer, or in some situations, an independent third party, for qualifying conditions on a Settlement Class Vehicle before the Date of Notice (“Pre-Notice”);
3. Towing services in connection with a Pre-Notice Qualifying Battery Failure.
4. Reasonably Reimbursable Costs related to a Settlement Class Member being stranded due to a Pre-Notice Qualifying Battery Failure.
What should Outback, Forester, Legacy, WRX, and Ascent owners do now?
This is the only way to get a reimbursement. The deadline to submit Claim Forms and supporting documentation is 60 days after the Effective Date, which could be as early as May 5, 2023. Subaru owners do not need to do anything now to ensure coverage under an extended warranty.
The report says 2015-2020 Subaru Outback, 2015-2020 Subaru Forester, 2015-2020 Subaru Legacy, 2015-2020 Subaru WRX, and 2019-2020 Subaru Ascent owners should review the notice materials on the Important Document page here.
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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report, where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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