Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
24,518 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.

2008 Subaru Forester engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Subaru Forester Owner Comments

problem #5

Feb 292012


  • 47,600 miles


I bought the car in may of 2008. On Feb. 29, the check engine light and the traction control light came on, as well as the cruise control light started flashing. I thought, why? I've only had it for almost 4 years and less than 50K miles. I checked my owner's manual, and the covered warranty is 5 yrs/ 50K miles, whichever comes first. I brought it to the dealership where I had bought the car from and an employee said that it is more than likely covered by warranty. On March 7th, 2012, I left my car at the dealership for diagnosis. They called me back, and informed me that it is not covered under warranty, because ca emission warranty is 3 yrs/50K miles whichever comes first. I told them that the owner's manual suggests that the warranty is 5 yrs/50K miles. The diagnosis codes were P2441 and that not only I spent $138 on diagnosis, the total cost to repair it is $1305. I declined the repair, because I, for one cannot afford it at this time, because I am on disability. I thought that they should honor Subaru's warranty. I checked various Subaru message boards, and I am not the only one with the same problem. A known Subaru specialist in our area also posted on a message board that they've gotten numerous calls about the same problem. They took pictures and sent it to Subaru. As of right now, we haven't heard anything from Subaru about any recalls. I think it should be recalled. Thank you for your time.

- Santa Rosa, CA, USA

problem #4

Mar 312010

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,228 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Subaru Forester. While driving 7 mph, the vehicle suddenly accelerated. The contact engaged the brakes but the vehicle would not slow down. He shifted into neutral and although the rpms increased, it eventually idled back to normal. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who stated that there were no failures found when the vehicle was inspected. The contact had not called the manufacturer directly when the complaint was filed. He stated that the dealer called the manufacturer regarding the failure. The dealer later found that the floor mats were not anchored to the hooks. The current and failure mileages were 16,228. Updated 06/03/10 the consumer he was starting to travel a steep, narrow road when the engine started to race without stepping on the gas pedal. He stepped on the brake, but nothing happened. He put the gear in neutral and it raced for a while, then returned to normal. Updated 06/09/10.

- Wayne, NJ, USA

problem #3

Mar 232009

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,959 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Subaru Forester. While driving approximately 5 mph out of a parking space the contact noticed that the vehicle suddenly accelerated and the brakes failed. In order to stop the vehicle the contact was forced to shift into neutral gear. The dealership informed the contact that the failure could not be reproduced. There were no prior warnings. The current and failure mileages were 37959. Updated 03/10/10. Updated 07/07/10

- Fort Myers, FL, USA

problem #2

Jun 012009


  • 6,966 miles
2008 Subaru Forester the drive by wire accelerator system surges between acceleration and deceleration when one tries to hold a steady highway speed. This is true whether it is being controlled manually or if cruise control is engaged. It also accelerates in cruise control when going downhill. Subaru has made an improvement in the computer engine control mechanism for the legacy model but have ignored the Forester customers. All dealerships are aware of the problem from customer complaints but do not have a remedy from Subaru.

- Erie, CO, USA

problem #1

Dec 252009

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,838 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Subaru Forester. While backing into a driveway at 5 mph in reverse the vehicle accelerated and crashed into another vehicle. The vehicle was able to be driven. No one was injured and the police were not notified. There was damage to the rear bumper. The vehicle was taken to the dealer; however, after a diagnostic test they were unable to determine the cause of the failure. A claim was filed with the Subaru manufacturer who stated that they would send a field agent to inspect the vehicle. The failure mileage was 13,838. Updated 2/17/10 updated 02/22/10.

- Mt. Pleasant, SC, USA

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