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.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
63,454 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.

2002 Subaru Impreza engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Subaru Impreza Owner Comments

problem #6

Oct 302005


  • 20,000 miles


Head gaskets on both sides of engine leaking oil and coolant at 20000 miles and 2.5 yrs old. Oil and coolant leak transfers on tires and exhaust. This can cause fire and loss of control. Subaru only acknowledges problem on other VIN on Impreza (my vehicle 2002 Impreza outback wagon) and forester. Even though forester uses the identical engine as Impreza.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #5

Apr 152008


  • 81,543 miles
My 2002 Subaru Impreza outback sport was also diagnosed in 4/08 with a leaking head gasket @ 81K by the dealer when I took it for a brake service. I bought the car new and gas mileage has been only ok. It has never overheated, ever, which is why I took it to an independent mechanic rather than spend the $3K the dealer wanted. An external leak was noted and I'm keeping an eye on it. I've heard rumors of problems with leaking head gaskets on this vehicle. Why not covered or monitored?

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #4

Sep 302002


  • 71,429 miles
Just learned that my 2002 Impreza sport has a leaking head gasket when the car only has 72,000 on it. The car has never gotten over 23 miles per gallon, even when it is highway driven. The car has had very very little mileage on it since it was purchased three years ago with 55,000 on it. No mention of any problems during its 60,000 mile maintenance. This came out of the blue.

- Avon, CT, USA

problem #3

Mar 032008

(reported on)


  • 43,420 miles


2002 Subaru Impreza with a leaking head gasket. Consumer states that the dealer said they would pay for half of the cost of the repairs. Consumer was then informed that both head gaskets were leaking. The cylinders were leaking coolant.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #2

Feb 052007

Impreza 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 119,330 miles
- the contact owns a 2002 Subaru Impreza wr, X and stated that the vehicle was leaking fuel, and there was a raw fuel smell coming from the passenger compartment of the vehicle. The fuel smell was stronger when the vehicle was running and the temperature was below 32 degrees. The contact currently has the vehicle at the dealership. The failure and current mileage were 119330. The vehicle also had a coolant lead. The drivers side door regulator was inopertive, the clutch had a judder, there was problem with the ABS. Updated

- Middletown, MD, USA

problem #1

Sep 152002


  • Manual transmission
  • 45,000 miles
My car is a total lemon. I pre-ordered the 2002 WRX in 2001 and was very anxious to receive it. As soon as I got the car the check engine light was on. The dealer diagnosed the problem as a cam position sensor wich they replaced 3 times. They told me I revved the car too high to throw the code. The code was thrown at 6200 RPM and the engine redlines at 7000. The dealership refused to work on this problem after the 3rd time. At 45000 miles my car began to miss and not run correctly. The dealership could not find any problem with it. I took it to another shop to get a 2nd opinion. They found that the cam position sensor had malfunctioned and caused my car to missfire when I would hit a bump in the road. They replaced the sensor and charged me a fee of $800 due to the massive troubleshooting work that led up to solving the problem. Finally the problem that I had since the car was brand new was fixed at the full cost to me. At 48000 my transmission was the next to go. I lost the ability to shift my car in any gear. I had it towed to the dealership as the powertrain warranty is 60000 miles. They dismantled my transmission to find 2nd gear stripped. They then denied to cover this under warranty as it was labeled abuse. They charged me $800 dollars for their time. Then then gave me a quote for $4500 extra dollars to replace the transmission. I had my car towed to the same shop that fixed my check engine light. They installed a new transmission for me at the cost of $2200. My transmisson has also broke again at 65000 miles. Now I have a car that doesn't run that I am paying on. I can not sell a car that doesn't run. Subaru does not care that their cars are junk. I really do not know what to do now.

- Columbus, OH, USA

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