really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
30,000 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.

2005 Subaru Outback brakes problems

brakes problem

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2005 Subaru Outback Owner Comments

problem #3

Jan 012011


  • 72,000 miles


Brakes are very weak for the first couple of stops after the car has been sitting for a while (about eight hours or more). Brakes work fine after warming up. This is very dangerous when first backing out of driving; would not be able to stop fast enough if a child or person was suddenly in the way and you needed to stop. This is the case with oem brake pads and after-market pads.

- Littleton, CO, USA

problem #2

Sep 232008

Outback 4-cyl

  • miles
The contact owned a 2005 Subaru Outback. The contact stated that the brakes failed to engage and the vehicle crashed into a tree and caught fire. The air bags did not deploy. Four people were injured and police and fire reports were filed. A month prior to the accident, the vehicle was inspected and no failures were found. The vehicle was inspected after the crash and it was discovered that the tumbler system was defective. The VIN was unavailable at the time of the complaint. The current and failure mileages were unknown. Updated 7/16/10 updated 07/27/10

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #1

Aug 172007

Outback 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,000 miles
Component: Service brakes, brake pads, details: The brake pads on my 2005 Subaru have warped (all 4) at 18,000 miles producing an uneven sensation as one is braking. It also increases the distance required to stop. After taking my Subaru in for a brake inspection (at 20,000 miles) I was told that all 4 wheels needed new brake pads, (even though my front brakes have 60% braking efficiency & 70% on the rear brakes). My partner, who is a professional driver, is the sole driver of our Subaru and is very rarely in stop-and-go traffic. On the few occasions when she is in heavy traffic she maintains extra distance between her vehicle and the vehicle in front of her to avoid having to use her brakes more then is absolutely necessary. Neither one of us have ever had to replace the brake pads on a vehicle with mileage as low as 20,000 miles and both of us have lived in large cities all of our lives. I had a similar problem on a 2000 Subaru forester. This is a definite safety issue. Subaru, overall, makes reliable, responsive and safe vehicles but this issue needs to be dealt with before someone is seriously injured or killed.

- Seattle, WA, USA

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