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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,513 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.

2003 Subaru Impreza fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2003 Subaru Impreza Owner Comments

problem #6

Jan 012008

Impreza 4-cyl

  • miles


2003 Subaru Impreza WRX has a problem with the rubber connector between fuel lines. Consumer feels that it should be a recall for this part and would like assistance with the repair cost. The consumer smelled a strong odor of gas when the vehicle was cold.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #5

Dec 012007

Impreza 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 80,000 miles
I have a cold weather fuel leak underneath the intake manifold. This fuel leak causes the cabin of the car to fill up with volatile fumes. It is a visible leak and drips on top of the engine near sources of ignition. I contacted Subaru of America and 3 of my local dealerships and they have acknowledged the problem but only rank it as a service bulletin not a recall. This problem exists with all Subaru WRX owners in a cold climate. Use a search engine on the internet for (cold weather fuel leak WRX ect..) and you will find thousands of affected owners. Subaru wants $500-$900 for the repair. I believe that this is a serious hazard for explosion, health, and the environment. Please help.

- West Valley, UT, USA

problem #4

Feb 092007

Impreza 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 25,000 miles
For a couple of years in cold weather, usually below 32 degrees, the smell of gasoline existed in the cabin of the vehicle. I had it checked during an local state inspection and discovered fuel was leaking on the passenger side of the engine compartment. It was discovered that the manufacturer was aware of this. I contacted three(3) local dealers, that all new about tsb 09-36-03. They all quoted the same $500 estimate to repair. Two of the dealers, Subaru of dallas and huffines Subaru in dallas Texas informed me that failure to correct the condition could result in an engine fire. Given the severe nature of the defect, that the manufacturer clearly knows about, this should be upgraded to a recall. 1) the danger of leaking fuel due to a manufacture defect. 2) the hazards of inhaling gasoline fumes 3) the environmental hazard and violations of epa regulations release gasoline and gasoline vapors into the environment.

- Carrollton, TX, USA

problem #3

Jan 202007

Impreza 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 68,000 miles


- the contact owns a 2003 Subaru Impreza. While attempting to warm the vehicle, the contact smelled fuel in the passenger compartment. He immediately looked under the hood and saw a constant dripping of fuel onto the engine. He turned the vehicle off. The vehicle has not been driven since the failure on January 20, 2007. The vehicle was purchased in May 2006. However, the problem only occurred in the winter months. The vehicle hasd the same problem as stated NHTSA action number PE04002 which has been closed, and did not result in a recall.

- Milford, CT, USA

problem #2

Dec 262006

Impreza 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 52,800 miles
See ODI number 10179098 (cont). I do not know if Subaru will assuage my concerns, but I cannot in good conscience not report this issue. First I think you have underestimated the fire danger. True there have been no fires caused directly by this problem (I think), but the problem only occurs in the cold, there are relatively few wrxs (when compared to Ford Explorer), and people who drive them normally are gearheads and take pretty good care of their cars--I.e. when they smell fuel they fix their car rapidly, or they have already modified their car with different fuel lines and no longer have the problem. I have to question how thoroughly you investigated this issue since your investigation only lasted 5 months. Were independent tests performed? from your statement you seem to be taking Subaru's word. The smell continues after the car is running, significant amounts of fuel are involved, and the fuel drips onto the engine block or turbo-very hot components. I don't know how this isn't a fire hazard. Secondly, the fumes are noxious. The first time this problem occurred I was transporting my newborn baby daughter home from the hospital. This is our only car. Please consider if you would like your child riding around in a vehicle with this problem. I think this is as much of a safety hazard as the fire danger. I would be happy to help with any investigation. I will provide an official statement, or allow you to come to my home do any diagnostics you would like to my car. I have to admit, I am somewhat disappointed at NHTSA's response to this issue. It seems that many have reported this issue, and the investigation has not been reopened. As a federal employee I know it is my responsibility to protect the public. I hope you feel the same way. I will be sending a copy of the note to my congresswoman, my senators, the senate committee on commerce; science; and transportation, and the house transportation and infrastructure committee. Thank you.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

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problem #1

Dec 262006

Impreza 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 5,280 miles
This is regarding a 2003 Subaru Impreza WRX. I am experiencing the fuel leak addressed in NHTSA action number : PE04002. I am located in albuquerque, New Mexico. Recently I have had the car outside in temperatures as low as 30 F (nights are spent in a garage next to a furnace--probably 40 F). I am having the fuel leak that you and Subaru of America claim occurs at only "extremely low temperatures." I have had it occur three times, and both times the fuel smell persisted after 15 minutes of driving, even with windows open. The fuel smell was bad enough that it gave me a headache and was detectable in my garage the next day by both my wife and I (and my wife did not know about the smell, I asked her to check the next morning if she smelled anything to confirm my nose). I brought it to the dealer to fix. They never mentioned the tsb, the NHTSA investigation, or how common the problem is. They did diagnose exactly the problem noted in the tsb. After being quoted North of $600 to fix the problem, I brought the car home because parts needed to be ordered. Researching on the internet I found multiple complaints on the web, including complaints on nasioc and I contacted Subaru of America about the problem. I am still working with Subaru of America to fix the problem, but based on others comments, Subaru's response has been erratic, and I am not counting on anything. (continued).

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

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