Service department did me dirty (2021 Sport)

Jul 25, 2023
Reaction score
I recently moved to a new state and took my 2021 Sport into my new local Subaru dealer for its 30k maintenance in early May. Pretty standard service, no issues, fluids changed, etc, etc. A weeks or so afterwards I had started to notice some buzzing/grinding noises coming from a stop usually after it had auto-stopped at a stoplight. Now I have to insert a disclaimer - It's entirely possible the noise started before this service. There's no way to know for sure. Either way I passed it off and didn't think much of it until one morning about 2 weeks ago pulling into my garage I noticed the noise again, very loud this time reverberating off the garage walls. So I read some forum threads about CVT failures and found a post with a video - sounding exactly like my issue. I decided to take the car in for service that day since the OP on the thread ended up getting a brand new transmission after only 6k miles.

Turns out that was indeed the issue with my Crosstrek, which was fully covered by the warranty so no big deal. Subaru did me right in my mind. Cut to about 10 days later and I finally get my car back at around 10AM. I drove the short distance home and then a short trip out for an errand, all under about 45MPH. At 1:25PM I leave for my 2PM shift at work. I've been driving at around 65-70MPH for about 10 min when at approximately 1:37PM I start merging from a 2 lane on-ramp to the middle right lane on the main highway at about 65MPH. Suddenly I feel a very stiff, jerky motion, as if the skid brakes were firing. First reaction was I had gotten too close to the car in front of me (about 30 feet) and the eyesight system fired off my brakes. So I started merging to the next lane over and accelerating. About 3 seconds after that I am thrown forward and what felt like every moving part on the car had locked up. Next thing I know is I am at a 45 degree angle to the direction of travel sliding uncontrollably down the highway. In milliseconds I gather myself and put all my knowledge on driving in icy conditions to the test and get the car oriented in the proper direction of travel. At this point the wheels must have been rotating freely as I had enough control to pull to the left shoulder and stop. I call into work and tell them what happened and that I'll be in as soon as possible (tardiness is a big deal), call my SO, and then call the dealership that did the work. They get a tow truck dispatched to me and I'm back in their lobby about an hour later. I make it a point to tell them that it could have ended much, much worse, especially if I had careened into another car, or off the side of the highway.

I got the call today (the next day) that the service techs hadn't filled up the differential fluid in the brand new transmission, and that is what caused it to lock up at 65MPH. Utterly ridiculous. They tell me that they will do what it takes to make it up to me. But there is no telling what damage was done to other parts of the car, especially the engine. Who knows, maybe even a bent rod or a hairline crack in crankshaft that can turn into a big problem down the road.

My question is what the appropriate request? I don't know if I will feel safe driving that car no matter what work is done and what parts are replaced. Do I ask them to replace my car? Or do I ask them for a lifetime warranty that will cover any sort of damage done to the power train that causes issues down the line?
Demand in writing they extend the warranty bumper to bumper for three years or go public and shame that dealer to hell and back
The good news, if there is any in this case, is that there is a transmission between the engine and the differential. Both the transmission and the diff are likely screwed but the chance that any damage went further up the line is no likely. If you had a manual transmission it could be a very different story.

Get the warranty as stated above, but I think you will be OK once the repairs are done properly.

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Members online

No members online now.

Forum statistics

Latest member

Latest Threads