Subaru of America and the NHTSA has issued an urgent recall of the 2023 Subaru Solterra EV and says owners should not drive the new electric vehicle until the issue is fixed. Subaru announced a safety recall on certain 2023 Subaru Solterra vehicles affecting 1,182 models already shipped and delivered to U.S. customers.
The Solterra was the subject of an earlier recall requiring the replacement of original hub bolts. Toyota was supposed to have fixed the potentially dangerous issue. Subaru says they have identified another problem with vehicles repaired at two port locations by one particular team of contractors.
Subaru announced the initial recall of the new Solterra in June 2021 before it had sold any new EVs to U.S. customers. The recall affected about 1,600 Solterra models. The 2023 Subaru Solterra EV is built by Toyota in its Motomachi assembly plant in Japan alongside the bZ4X, where production was suspended until a fix to the problem was found. The Automotive News report said Toyota “raced to find a remedy for the problem.”
The solution was supposedly figured out and fixed by adding a washer to the hub bolts and improving the friction of the wheel surface. An earlier report said it took Toyota engineers so long to introduce the remedy because they needed to verify its effectiveness and safety under various conditions, including turning, braking, and acceleration.
Now, Subaru says the teams did not correctly complete the repair procedure resulting in the potential for significantly under-torqued bolts. “Out of an abundance of caution, Subaru recalls all vehicles repaired at all port locations supported by the third-party contractor. Subaru Solterra vehicles without the original hub bolt concern and vehicles repaired at other facilities are not affected, says the Subaru announcement made today, February 10, 2023.
How will the wheel issue be fixed?
For all potentially affected vehicles, Subaru retailers will inspect the hub bolts and, if necessary, re-torque to the specification at no cost to the customer. Until the inspection/remedy is completed, Subaru of America says, “please do not drive the vehicle.”
Subaru instructs vehicle owners to park their vehicles and contact their retailer to have the EV towed for inspection. Subaru of America will cover the Towing cost.
What should customers do next?
2023 Subaru Solterra EV owners will be contacted by mail by Subaru of America. To find out if a vehicle is affected, please go to subaru.com/recalls. Vehicle owners can also visit NHTSA.gov/recalls and enter their 17-digit vehicle identification number for more information on this recall. Alternatively, call the Vehicle Safety Hotline at 888-327-4236, Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Time.
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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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