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Would You Pay A Monthly Fee For Remote Start? New Subaru Models Already Require It

Would you pay a monthly fee to unlock new Subaru model features like remote start? New Subaru models already require it.


Would you pay a monthly fee to use the heated seats in your new 2022 Subaru Forester, Outback, or Crosstrek? A report from Kelly Blue Book says it’s a business plan some automakers have explored. Analysts from Cox Automotive surveyed consumers who intend to purchase a vehicle in the next two years and found that most car buyers are unwilling to pay a monthly fee to unlock luxury features.

Surprisingly, 25 percent of those surveyed were willing to pay a monthly fee to access some features. More than 80 percent would consider paying more for added safety features, like automatic emergency braking. They’d pay up to $35 a month to activate them.

2022 Subaru Forester, 2022 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback

Those willing to pay for added performance would pay $20 to $25 per month. Shoppers willing to pay for creature comforts like heated-and-cooled seats or remote start would pay $15 to $31 per month.

When we looked into Subaru of America’s models, we found the Camden, N.J. automaker has not just explored the idea. New models require a connected services subscription to unlock the remote start feature.

Would You Pay A Monthly Fee For Remote Start? New Subaru Models Already Have It

According to the Kelly Blue Book study, every 2022 Subaru model, including the 2022 Subaru Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek, has remote start available on many trim levels. KKB says only the 2022 Subaru BRZ requires a Subaru Starlink connected services subscription to activate it.

We found that all new Subaru models come with a three-year Starlink trial subscription to Safety Plus services. The service includes remote start and a six-month trial subscription to Safety and Security Plus services for personal assistance with navigation, restaurant reservations, and scheduling service appointments.

After the three-year trial subscription, new Forester, Outback, Crosstrek, and other new model owners have to pay for features like remote start, advanced automatic collision notification, and SOS emergency assistance features.

Subaru doesn’t charge customers extra for the brand’s EyeSight safety technology with automatic emergency braking and creature comforts like heated-and-cooled seats or a heated steering wheel.

If you buy a 2022 Forester, Outback, Crosstrek, and other new Subaru models, you don’t pay for remote start and other unique safety features, but they are only accessible for three years.

You Might Also Like: Why You Should Avoid New Subaru Forester, Crosstrek, Outback Base Trim Levels

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: Subaru USA


Julius Rosen (not verified)    May 9, 2022 - 1:35AM

Just plain stupid, in other words after 3 years I lose my features or with depreciates the value of the car. It's a reason I won't buy Subaru now or even look at one

Nick Abriola (not verified)    January 20, 2023 - 1:11AM

So the 3 year safety plus trial does NOT include the remote start. Only the 6-month security plus trial includes remote start. After the 6 months, it’s 99.95 plus tax for 3 years.

George Baumann (not verified)    April 22, 2023 - 9:15AM

Today is April 22, 2023 and I just received an email notice from Subaru saying that the trial period for my Forester (bought in July 2020) is coming to an end. It's time to start paying if I want to keep using the remote start, and, I guess, some other features that I will have to investigate before I make a decision on this. I have just calculated the daily cost to keep the service active. It is 41 cents per day, or, $149 per year. Do I really want to pay 41 cents per day for the remote start feature - something I used a half dozen times last year and didn't really need? Well, given that none of my previous vehicles had that feature, I am content to wait until I get to the car to start the engine. And besides, it saves on gas, and saves carbon emission time, so maybe it's better if I just don't renew. The jury is still out on this "purchase",. or should I say "rental"? Also, since it was billed as a "3-year trial", I would like to see if it stays active until mid-July, which is when I took ownership of my car. That's still 3 months away. Time will tell . . .

Pellot (not verified)    May 9, 2023 - 5:10PM

I'm a Subaru fan. I'm on my 2nd Subaru. But unfortunately this might be my very last. Due to the fact that you have to pay for starlink and remote starter and vehicle location etc. But we also just purchased a 2023 Rav 4 and wow Toyota blew me away. I love both my Subaru and Toyota but again Toyota killed it with their free app that gives you a remote starter, vehicle location, tells you if windows were left down when vehicle is shut off. I'm impressed with Toyota 100% plus they also included 3 phone charger cables, lock nuts, mud flaps, really nice weather mats. Unlike my Forester I had to replace them weather mats that they charged $150 plus and didn't have mud guards, and a lot more that the Rav came with. And my Forester cost me a lot more. Makes me kind of regret my 2022 Subaru Forester Limited purchase.