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
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
123,400 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. rebuild transmission (1 reports)
2003 Subaru Outback transmission problems

transmission problem

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2003 Subaru Outback Owner Comments

problem #1

Apr 202016

Outback 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,400 miles


Love is a Subaru? Only if it is tough love. This car up until now has never been touched except by the dealer: Burt Subaru (later Groove) of Denver. It was bought new from them. Worst by far, the transmission failed. After moving from Denver to Vancouver Washington and thereby having no long-term connection with a service advisor here at Dick Hannah Subaru, I phone my Denver advisor (Dave Coates?) at Groove. Dave was shocked, particularly since he had assured me that I would get 200,000 miles plus for all the meticulous care I had given the car. He said to contact Subaru corporate because transmission problems were rare and see if they would help. Hah. Subaru corporate said car was way out of warranty and offered me $500 off a new Subaru, not mind you $500 off the $3900 Subaru wanted to give me a rebuilt transmission. Right about then there was no way that I wanted another Subaru. I toyed with giving up entirely on a car at less than 125,000 miles, remembering that I had got over 200,000 miles off my Toyota Camry with NONE of these problems. In the end, I went to AAMCO had had them rebuild the transmission for $1000 less and with a ten year warranty which is 5 times what Subaru offered. Yes, I am disgusted, and NO--I will not only never again buy a Subaru in fact, I am warning everyone I know that Subaru is unreliable and that the company doesn't care.

- , Vancouver, WA, USA

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