2010 Subaru Outback seat belts / air bags NHTSA complaints: Air Bags:Frontal

NHTSA — Air Bags: Frontal Problems

CarComplaints.com Seal Of


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
2,106 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.

2010 Subaru Outback seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2010 Subaru Outback Owner Comments

problem #7

Aug 152009


  • 200 miles


The contact owns a 2010 Subaru Outback. The contact stated that while driving at any speed, the passenger side air bag did not activate when someone was sitting in the passenger seat. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer twice but the failure could not be diagnosed. The contact called the manufacturer who stated that the seats were set to activate the air bags at 125 lbs. The failure mileage was 200.

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #6

Feb 082010


  • 10,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Subaru Outback. The contact stated that when driving on the highway at 65 mph, the steering wheel began to shake violently. The vehicle also pulled from left to the right no matter what speed. The contact also stated that the front passenger side air bag off light was always illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealership where it was at the time of the complaint, awaiting a response from the manufacturer. This visit would be the fourth time the vehicle was taken to the dealership and had been kept for a long period of time. The current and failure mileages were approximately 10,000.

- Rockford , IL, USA

problem #5

Apr 082010


  • 0 miles
2010 Subaru Outback 2.5I premium, purchased 3/23/10. When my wife, who weighs 130 pounds, sits in the front passenger seat, most of the time the airbag light says "off", only occasionally and unpredictably does it say "on". I have had the vehicle in for service several times. The sensor was recalibrated, and the seat bottom was replaced. Both the dealership and Subaru of America say the system is operating as designed. I say I paid for an airbag that works and I want an airbag that works.

- Newburyport, MA, USA

problem #4

May 142010


  • 0 miles


Re: Subaru Outback 2010. Passenger front airbag. My wife is 5'5' and 108lb. The passenger front airbag is "deactivated" or "activated" based on the weight of the front passenger. When my wife is in the passenger seat, approximately 75% of the time, the dash indicates the passenger airbag is off, and this is irregardless of her sitting position. I called Subaru dealership and they said it was working properly and nothing could be done. Then I called Subaru America and the representative said that is likely working properly and she is near the cut-off in weight to set off the airbag. The recommend I bring it to the Subaru dealership to inspect that it is infact working properly. My understanding is that the airbag should be deployed for any person over 100lb and 5'0'. Subaru would not release the information to what they set the airbag weight limit for activation. They said that if the inspection shows the system is working properly that nothing further can be done. 1) what is the weight limit recommended for passenger airbag deployment? 2) is Subaru complaint with this safety standard?

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #3

Nov 012009


  • 1,000 miles
My wife and I own a 2010 Subaru Outback. The passenger side air bag does not function properly or has a faulty design. The weight sensor is supposed to turn on the air bag when anyone over 100 pounds sits in the seat. My wife weighs 130 pounds. The air bag does not become active more than 50% of the time when she is sitting in the seat. Subaru tells us that the sensor is functioning properly and is calibrated correctly, yet my wife continues to be unprotected more than half of the time. They offer no resolution to the problem other than recommending that she sit upright in the seat. The 2010 Outback is all new this year and I believe that this air bag design is a flaw with catastrophic potential. This is a huge safety risk for people in or near this weight range. The air bag is supposed to come on for anyone over 100 pounds, but in reality isn't reliably engaging unless you are about 150 pounds or more. Our local dealer has admitted to several complaints for the same issue. The internet also reveals others having the same problem. Subaru needs to investigate the problem and probably initiate a recall in order to replace the sensor threshold with a lower weight limit so average size people will be protected. This top safety pick vehicle has a major safety issue.

- Bozeman, MT, USA

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problem #2

Mar 082010


  • 40 miles
No injuries or accidents but the passenger airbag does not stay activated consistently in my 2010 Subaru Outback when a female adulxt passenger weighing approx 125 lbs sits in it. I was told by Subaru mechanic that there have been problems with this sensor but there are no reset specs or recall for the seat from corporate yet.

- Studio City, CA, USA

problem #1

Feb 092010


  • 3,500 miles
I have a new 2010 Subaru Outback that seems to be a fine automobile except for one safety-related defect. We noticed soon after starting to drive the Outback that the air bag indicator light showed that the passenger side air bag stays off when my 140-pound wife or 135-pound daughter ride in the passenger seat. We took it to a dealer who said there is no adjustment that can be made, but they re-calibrated the airbag electronics to see if that helped. It did not. I took the car back to the same dealer a couple of weeks later and was again told that there was nothing that could be done to make the passenger airbag work properly and that they have several of the new Outbacks in for the same problem and nothing can be done to fix it. Just as a test I took my wife out to the lot and had her sit in the passenger seat of another Outback to see if that one worked. It did not. I conclude that there is a design flaw in the airbag sensors in the new Outbacks that keep the passenger airbags from turning on when 135 to 140-pound adults sit in the passenger seat.

- Littleton, CO, USA

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