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Subaru Canada Dealers Score Dead Last In J.D. Power Customer Service Dept Quality

What car brands offer the best service department quality in Canada? Check out the ten best mainstream automakers. Subaru scores dead last in the latest J.D. Power CSI study.


What is Subaru's customer service like in Canada after driving a 2022 Subaru Forester, Outback, Crosstrek, or Ascent off the retailer's lot? In the 2022 J.D. Power Customer Service Index (CSI) Canadian dealership service segment, Subaru dealers score dead last. Here's why.

J.D. Power says the study measures customer satisfaction for maintenance or repair work among owners and lessees of one- to three-year-old Subaru vehicles. The CSI study measures five areas, with weighted scores combined into a composite number for each brand. The five weighted areas are service quality, service adviser, vehicle pickup, service facility, and service initiation.

2022 Subaru service
photo credit: Michael’s Subaru

How is Subaru doing in customer service?

You can have the best car, but it can ruin your new car experience if the service is lousy. In Canada, Subaru scored last in the new car dealer's overall customer satisfaction index ranking.

Based on a 1,000-point scale, the overall mainstream brand customer service average satisfaction score in the 2022 CSI study was 799. Subaru Canada retailers score 780 points in 2022, the lowest of any car brand in Canada.

2022 Subaru service
photo credit: Michael’s Subaru

The top 10 Canadian car brands in customer service

Lexus ranks number one, followed by Mercedes-Benz, GMC, Mazda, Toyota, Kia, Volkswagen, Honda, BMW, and Ford/Lincoln dealers.

"Whether customers visit a dealership's shop, the top three reasons for their decisions are the same: positive prior experience with the service department; the convenience of location; and word-of-mouth recommendation from family or friends," says J.D. Power.

In Canada, Subaru dealers' service departments aren't rated highly by customers. According to the study, the dealership service segment overall had a lower percentage of customers (94%) citing service completion on the first visit, similar to the pre-pandemic level of 2019. J.D. Power says, "A customer's trust in their auto-service provider trends upward in correlation to satisfaction with the service facility."

What does it mean for Subaru customers?

In Canada, Subaru dealers must upgrade their service departments to offer the best quality service. Where do Subaru of America dealers rank? In the U.S., Subaru is steadily improving and has shown continual improvement over the past five years. Subaru of America retailers scored 852 points in 2022, up from last year's 843 points. In 2020, Subaru scored 831 overall for mainstream brands, and in 2019 Subaru scored 829.

If a new all-wheel-drive 2022 Subaru Forester, 2023 Outback, 2023 Crosstrek, 2023 Ascent, or other new model is on your shopping list, current customers are not satisfied with their service department experience in Canada, scoring the lowest of any car brand.

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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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Photo credit: Michael’s Subaru


George Binder (not verified)    September 21, 2022 - 10:11PM

I owned 2016 and still own 2018 Subaru Forester 2.5 Touring. I’m not qualified to comment on service experience since neither of the cars needed dealer involvement except for regular synthetic oil changes every 10,000 km. I found the extra parts I bought to improve the car trim and the oil changes were comparable with other cars. One exception was last week when I purchased a touch up stick for a couple of parking wars scratches and the dealer charged me almost double of the average cost of the market for other cars of $40.00, not only that but the paint silver colour didn’t match my car. I will try to return the purchase and will see how it goes.