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fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
10,000 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2006 Subaru Forester seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2006 Subaru Forester Owner Comments

problem #1

Sep 132006

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles


Since purchasing my vehicle brand new on 7/4/05, the front passenger occupant detection system fails to activate the front airbag for passengers who are both larger and heavier than the purported cutoff of 80-pound children. The passenger is 5'3", 105lbs, yet the airbag light goes to the "off" position intermittently despite the passenger sitting straight. The airbag also sometimes fails to arm upon start up of the car, and will remain "off" for more than 15 minutes while the car is moving. The car was also involved in a safety campaign, in which my passenger seat wiring was already checked by the dealer and found to be routed properly, which may have affected the airbag if routed improperly. Thus, the wiring is a non-issue. The fault is in the passenger sensing equipment. Attempts to bring the car to the dealer to be checked with diagnostic equipment, ended in being told that the system is "working as designed". I contacted Subaru corporate and local dealer on 10/18/07, who told me that nothing can be done to fix/change the situation, as the system cannot be adjusted, nor do they perceive a problem with the system. I already explained to Subaru that a number of other known owners of 06-08 Forester models have the same problem, and that 130lb passengers still have the same problem. I have concluded that while the intent of Subaru's design was good, the design is flawed, as the sensor pad is not sensitive enough for many passengers, and the intermittent-nature of the sensor is quite dangerous should a frontal-impact occur. This problem has existed on my car for over a year in which I started taking notice, and there is no known fix, nor have I been told that Subaru is admitting to a problem or seeking a solution. This is a big liability and safety concern of mine, and hope to find some resolution.

- Alhambra, CA, USA

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