Hi, I haven’t waded through every comment on this thread and am new to this forum. I joined after having problems recently with my new Ascent (we bought in MD in November 2018). Up until recently, I was thrilled with the car. Then it started acting up (just reached 5000 miles) while driving on the highway at about 60 mph with my two young kids in the back seat. It started with the feeling that a belt was slipping and made squeaking noises on and off for several minutes. I never lost control and no warning lights came on the dashboard. But it was very unsettling. Happened several more times the next day before I got it to the dealership. Initially, the dealer could not reproduce it and tried to have me pick up the car. When I insisted they keep driving it for another day, they eventually got it to act up and recorded it. So now, a new transmission has been ordered and we are waiting for the repair. My concern is that it is still not clear to me why the transmission failed. Has Subaru actually figured out what the issue is and made any changes to true transmission? I could I end up needing another new transmission again at 10k miles? I will say that the dealership I have been working with has been great so far. However, after paying over $40K for a car that needs a new transmission after just 5000 miles, I’m having a hard time feeling confident in the vehicle itself. Part of what drove me to buy a Subaru was it’s safety and reliability...My two cents...
A number of people are looking for validation that Subaru sucks, or that Subaru is the greatest. That's confirmation bias. Instead, evaluate them for what they are - that does not include a singular experience, but their overall activities, attitude, and customer satisfaction. Your conclusion may be different than mine, and that's fine. But don't form a conclusion, EITHER way, and then look for proof of only that conclusion.
As a for instance, on the very tangent above regarding faux shifting that a number of people are discussing...
I too would prefer that it does not faux shift. I've publicly stated that multiple times. That's even though I understand why it does so (and, I understand better than many, from having talked to people within SoA).
Do I want the faux shifting gotten rid of? Heck yes. Or at least an option to do so. But, like everyone else, I bought the car knowing it faux shifted. It's mentioned in virtually every review, and something Subaru is quite proud of - rightfully so, in that the CVT faux shifts very very well when you push the car.
So, did I let SoA know that I want the faux shifting gone? Yes. Did they respond to me? Yes. Did they say yes to my request? No. They said they'd make sure that their design team was aware of it, and would consider it, based on everyone's feedback. I won't call that terrible customer service because they won't make a complex TCM software update just to make me and a few others happy. I wouldn't expect them to do so. This isn't a custom car, and making this thing properly act like a CVT requires a lot of programming - possibly more than making it act like an automatic (since that's pretty easy - make some fake gear ranges, and shift near redline).
So, I am THRILLED with my car - not because I want fake shifting, but, because, before I bought it, I knew it fake shifted, and I was willing to accept that for everything else I gained, like the better infotainment system than the competition, the better (usually FAR better) AWD, the better safety rating, the promise that the 3rd row safety is tops too.
I did not buy the car thinking I could force Subaru to make a change just for me.
Here's the thing I DO know from extensively researching Subaru and not judging them by my varied (and sometimes horrid) experiences with other car manufacturers... Subaru actually DOES listen. I can name dozens of things Subaru has changed based on customer feedback. Heck, the just released radio update doesn't just fix some of the issues people have been experiencing, but also "fixes" the issue of the radio not being set up properly (even though setting it up properly would resolve that). The hitch kit was modified twice due to dealer AND customer feedback. The last of the Gen 4 Outbacks were redesigned with room behind the headlights so they were easier to replace bulbs (mine, which was a first year Gen 4, required pulling the bumper cover and removing the headlight assembly, or pulling the wheel well) - AND THEN they warrantied those car's lights for 10 years from manufacture date AND reimbursed anyone who came in with light bulb and/or labor receipts.
Just an idea of what that costs... there were over 400,000 Legacies and Outbacks they did that for. ONE bulb at a manufacturer cost of $10 (instead of end user cost of $16-50) makes that potentially FOUR MILLION DOLLARS before the labor costs, and before refunding bulb price and labor for previous bulbs. All because people complained they burned out and were a pain to replace. Who warranties light bulbs for ten years?!?!
And, in the event something can be upgraded mid year on a vehicle with software, they've been known to do that as well... INCLUDING TCM updates and throttle mapping updates and so on (so, those of you who think the gas pedal is too touchy or needs to be remapped - email them - they've done entire ECU updates in the past when people complained).
AT THE SAME TIME...
Those of you who have real transmission issues DO have a reason to be upset. You've made a big purchase of something that's supposed to work. But, be aware of the following: my thoughts are that SoA WON'T reach out to you - they don't even know that you want them to. Their assumption is quite likely that the dealer is doing what the dealer is supposed to do - fix your car.
On the other hand, if you DO want to speak to them, THEN email or call them. Heck, there's one of you in this forum who didn't, and it took one short email from me to them, and Grant over at SoA gave you a call. ANY of you can do that. Sure, I've been chatting back and forth about my thoughts on the various Subies with Grant for years, but I don't have any special place in their email queue. It's simple. Email, get a response, strike up a communication - OR call them. That's really all it takes.
Alas, as mentioned earlier, the DEALERS fix 99.9% of the cars - they are not shipped back to Indiana (or Gunma Japan for the Crosstreks and the likes). So, that's why the dealer is the first point of contact. No one at SoA sits there digging through all the dealer service logs of all 629 dealers every day. So, if you want to speak to someone at SoA regarding your problem, call them.
Believe this, don't believe this, wait for proof. That's up to you. This is just my opinion, but it's based on talking to people on the inside, talking to more customers than the entire population of this forum, and following a multitude of forums with a quarter of a million users across them (so, we're not talking about the small sample size some of you think).
Subaru is usually proactive about any such issues. There's a tiny handful of CVT issues reported so far in all the Ascent groups, and two indirect sock puppet accounts that I won't out. IF this becomes a real issue, I'm pretty sure that Subaru will do what they usually do. ANNOUNCE IT TO THE WORLD, DO SO EARLY, DO A VOLUNTARY RECALL, STAND BEHIND THEIR PRODUCT AT ANY COST.
Seriously, think about the weld non-issue that some dealers are using as excuses for their delivery delays. Subaru immediately stopped sale on the vehicles and issued a voluntary recall, then announced they would destroy and replace the vehicles that had missing welds. 293 cars destroyed and replaced. That would have cost a pretty penny, but they promised to do so, even so early in the non-event that they didn't know if it was zero, one or all 293 cars.
In the end, all vehicles were cleared. But who the heck does that? For those wondering, the welds that were miscounted were in the B-Pillar - something NO ONE would notice without chopping the car into pieces. As a matter of fact, without a catastrophic roll-over event (which is more difficult on a Subaru than on most other cars with the same ground clearance), it wouldn't have mattered AT ALL.
But, they deemed it a safety issue, under the insanely slim possibility, that out of 40,000 cars for this year, one of those 293 would have a catastrophic roll-over event, so, they were willing to destroy ALL of them.
Who's good at statistics? Who can work out the odds of that happening?
As a matter of reference, remember the Takata airbag recall? Most of you probably don't know the lengths they're going to find EVERY affected car to fix, even though some of the costs will be theirs. Besides them using every contact method available to them, no matter where, when or from who you bought an affected Subaru, no matter whether it was original sale, or used three times removed, they are now asking for volunteers from the Subaru Ambassadors to check vehicles we see, and engage the owners, and give them the info they need so they can get their defective airbags replaced for free.
They go to extreme lengths to make customers happy and to keep them safe.
Please folks, keep us posted about how things are going, and, as I said to someone else privately, if I find out anything, I WILL post it here. But, honestly, Subaru has very usually been very up front with this stuff - you may know before me. And currently, there's no TSB, and there's no widespread complaints, and those I know who are in the know have also confirmed that to be the case.