2008 Subaru Outback engine NHTSA complaints: Vehicle Speed Control

NHTSA — Vehicle Speed Control Problems

CarComplaints.com Seal Of


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
22,097 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.

2008 Subaru Outback engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Subaru Outback Owner Comments

problem #4

Aug 032015


  • 36,580 miles


Twice in less than six months, while my car was stopped but in drive, with my foot firmly pressed on the brake, the car has revved up and surged forward of its own Accord. Braking did nothing to stop the car either time. On August 3, 2015 at @ 8:30 a.M., I pulled into a parking space directly facing a building and stopped. As I was getting ready to shift from drive to park, the car surged forward, across a sidewalk, and into/through the wall/windows of a business. I contacted the local Subaru dealership and was told they knew of no similar issues locally or nationally. I left my car with the dealership for a week so they could inspect it. The car was driven under 30 miles and the issue did not arise, so the car was returned to me. I asked that they notify Subaru nationally and the NHTSA of the incident, and only learned later that they did neither. On December 19, 2015, I was on a city street (wet, but not icy) @ block back from a red light completely stopped in a line of traffic. I was at least 4-6 behind the car in front of me, with my foot firmly depressing the brake, and my car again surged forward, despite all my efforts to control it, and slammed into the rear of the car in front of me. I contacted the dealership again, and only after two visits was a record made of the 12/19/2015 incident and I was given the number for national Subaru customer service. I have requested a form to allow an inspector to download information from the event data recorder for review when he inspects the car in two weeks. I use only my right foot on the brake and gas pedal. I have factory floor mats which are pinned down and do not move. I wear flat shoes.

- Missoula, MT, USA

problem #3

Jul 122012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 22,807 miles
Vehicle will loose acceleration without warning. This has happened six (6) times. When this occurs pressing the gas pedal does nothing. The vehicle's speed immediately drops to about 5 mph. The "engine" and "cruise" lights illuminate. The tachometer continually fluctuates between 2500and 3000 RPM during this time, . one must pull over and turn off the engine, let it set for a few minutes then restart the engine in order to reset the acceleration system. We have had several near accidents as drivers behind our vehicle needed to swerve away from our vehicle as it lost acceleration. Subaru performed the following. 1. flashed the engine control module (ECM) code twice. 2. replaced the gas pedal assemble twice 3. replaced the engine wiring harness once 4. replaced the engine control module (ECM) once. I have three (3) services cases recorded with Subaru of America (soa). The case numbers are as listed. > 1-2810691799 filed on December 17, 2012 > 1-2888482660 filed on December 26, 2012 > 1-4032748404 filed on May 21, 2013 the ECM was replaced on May 29, 2013 and we hope this will resolve the problem. However during this ten (10) month period of time soa always promised to correct the problem yet did so reluctantly. As the number of incidents went from 3 to 6 soa customer services was not at all customer orientated. These failures are a safety issue. Accident, injury or death could have been the end result of any of these incidents. We have been very lucky but honestly do not know that the problem has been resolved.

- Swampscott, MA, USA

problem #2

Dec 092009


  • 19,000 miles
My wife had an uncontrolled acceleration event in her 2008 Subaru Outback when she was trying to park behind another car. She didn't think the floor mat was involved. She had winter boots on and thought she was only pressing on the brake. Her front license plate was torn and she did about $700 of damage to the other car's rear bumper.

- Baldwinsville, NY, USA

problem #1

Mar 282008

Outback 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 10,000 miles
Sudden unexpected acceleration while driving. Even pulling into the driveway with foot on the brake the engine revs up or same problem while sitting at a stoplight. It's as though the car does not want to stop. At times if you shift down and let off on the gas the car goes for a short stretch without slowing down.

- Warren, MA, USA

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