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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fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
19,941 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 Outback transmission problems

transmission problem

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2003 Subaru Outback Owner Comments

problem #5

Aug 012008


  • 75,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Subaru Outback. While driving at any speed, the vehicle bounces, shakes, and wobbles from side to side. The failure is also followed by a bumping sound. The contact believes that it is causing wear and tear on the vehicle. She is terrified to drive the vehicle. The dealer stated that the vehicle was performing this way due to the items in the vehicle. The driveshaft was replaced and the dealer stated that the viscus cup needed to be replaced. Currently, there is failure with the struts, bearings, and suspension. The dealer stated that the vehicle would pass inspection. The failure mileage was 75,000.

- Far Rockaway, NY, USA

problem #4

Nov 032006

Outback 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,207 miles
: the contact stated while driving 40 mph on wet roads, the vehicle ran rough, and did not accelerate properly. The vehicle began to buck, and the check engine light illuminated constantly. The vehicle was taken to a private repair shop, where the transmission fluid was found to be empty, and was refilled. The problems persisted, so the vehicle was taken to a service dealer several days later, where the problem was unable to be determined.

- Conshohocken, PA, USA

problem #3

Feb 172003


  • 500 miles
Nar 03-27-2003 mr the car dies intermittently at speeds between 20-25 mph on deceleration. The power is completely lost with no power steering control. Additional items noticied.. shifting in transmission at low speeds, dashboard creaks and drivers window faulty.

- East Wenatchee, WA, USA

problem #2

Feb 072003


  • miles
Nar 07-15-2003 the consumer vehicle made high frequency noises that effected the hearing on the driver inside of the car while driving at a speed above 50 ml hr, also series of strong multiple jerking occurred.

- Buffalo Grove, IL, USA

problem #1

Mar 232003

Outback 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
On multiple occasions, and with multiple drivers, I have had 2 2003 Outbacks with frequent stalling when moving from neutral to first, or to reverse. This is potentially dangerous when moving out into traffic. Subaru denies receiving prior complaints (despite the material on your site) and in general denies that there is any problem. They also compelled me to sign a "gag" clause as part of a deal whereby they exchanged car # 1 for car # 2. I have arbitrarily put in a specific month, day and year but it has happened on multiple occasions. Also car # 1 had 2 incidents of the engine running too rough to be driven, progressively losing power and then quitting - when restarted, ran fine. Also car # 1 had 1 episode of turning over well but refusing to start.

- Cooperstown, NY, USA

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