really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
71,500 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.

2004 Subaru Outback drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2004 Subaru Outback Owner Comments

problem #2

Oct 112009


  • 103,000 miles


The automatic gear shift had been locked in park, which never happened previously. It eventually was released by putting the tip of a key into the area of the panel. Advised for this problem in the drivers manual. After driving the vehicle twice more, it was parked again. When the key was put in the ignition, there was a whirring sound and when it started, it surged forward very rapidly and could not be stopped by using the brakes.. the vehicle was out of control. It was off the road and rocks punctured a tire. It stopped. When brought to the Subaru repair shop, the insurance adjustor did not advise repair, because of heavy damage to the engine, transmission etc.

- Shaftsbury, VT, USA

problem #1

Mar 092009


  • 40,000 miles
Blown headgasket at only 40K. Car has been maintained on a regular schedule with extra care car when needed. Took to dealer and complained of smell of coolant in the interior of car when driving and after shutting vehicle down or at a traffic light stop. Took to dealer complaining of a noise coming from the bottom of engine. After the dealer examined vehicle nothing was found as per report. I took the car for brake repair and the mechanic noted a coolant leak from the left bank of the engine block. He stated that he car has a blown headgasket on the left bank of the cylinder block. The warranty on the powertrain is about to run out and he advised to return the vehicle to the dealer for the repair. He did state that the dealer will only repair the bank that is leaking and the other would not be covered and should be done at the same time to prevent the other bank from blowing out due to a change in the balance of pressure on the block resulting from the replacement of only one headgasket.

- Otisville, NY, USA

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