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So, last year, Subaru extended the warranty for several models with the CVT through MY2015. This last week, Subaru has expanded the CVT extended warranty to 2016-17 MY vehicles.

It's important to note that this is a technical service bulletin - TSB, it is NOT NOT NOT a recall.

While this doesn't expand to the Ascent in any way, I thought I would drop it here because many of us have other Subies or it could potentially be applicable to the Ascent in the future.

Personally, I don't know why they've expanded it, but the Forester and Outback forums are speculating it has to do with the age of the vehicles starting to exceed the manufacturer's warranty in some respects (5y/60k miles) and this provides the customers with peace of mind.

To my point about Subaru being a car company like no other, this shows Subaru will reimburse anyone that has already paid for repairs.

As an owner, I'm curious to see if they do something like specify a fluid change interval going forward to help with whatever they're noticing.

Happy Subaruing,
 

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I received a similar notice in the mail for my 2013 Legacy and within a couple months or so the CVT was causing the car to stall out randomly and was not safe.
Brought it in and few weeks later I got it back at no cost to me and they had replaced the torque converter, but it did stall one more time after that and might have to bring it in again:( It was right at the 60k mark so i'm glad this was extended.

As much as i want to believe the CVT is a stout and reliable unit i have my reservations. I've also had CVT bucking issue when I 1st got the car that went away after the 1st year and at about 30k we starting to hear loud clicking noises when 1st taking off. The car is good enough where i'm not about to offload, but if it stalls again i'll probably have to bring it in for another go at the dealer and then trade it in.
 
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I received a similar notice in the mail for my 2013 Legacy and within a couple months or so the CVT was causing the car to stall out randomly and was not safe.
Brought it in and few weeks later I got it back at no cost to me and they had replaced the torque converter, but it did stall one more time after that and might have to bring it in again:( It was right at the 60k mark so i'm glad this was extended.

As much as i want to believe the CVT is a stout and reliable unit i have my reservations. I've also had CVT bucking issue when I 1st got the car that went away after the 1st year and at about 30k we starting to hear loud clicking noises when 1st taking off. The car is good enough where i'm not about to offload, but if it stalls again i'll probably have to bring it in for another go at the dealer and then trade it in.
So far, I've seen no indication of such problems on the high torque CVTs in the WRX and Outback 3.6r. So, in that we have a newer and beefier version of the high torque CVT, I'm hoping that trend continues with our CVTs as well. Definitely keeping an eye on it though, especially because I use the heck out of my car on and off road, and upcoming towing, where the CVT has to do a whole lot of work.

Interesting was the problem with the torque converter, since that's not a CVT specific thing.
 

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The only thing I've heard related to the 3.6R's and transmission is the potential for a bad torque converter in the 5AT models - nothing related to the HT-CVT used in the newer ones.
 

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So far, I've seen no indication of such problems on the high torque CVTs in the WRX and Outback 3.6r. So, in that we have a newer and beefier version of the high torque CVT, I'm hoping that trend continues with our CVTs as well. Definitely keeping an eye on it though, especially because I use the heck out of my car on and off road, and upcoming towing, where the CVT has to do a whole lot of work.

Interesting was the problem with the torque converter, since that's not a CVT specific thing.
My son just got his letter from SOA for the warranty extension on his 2016 WRX with CVT. It includes all 2016-2017 Legacy/Outback, Impreza, Crosstrek, and Forester. I imagine another letter will come out including my 2018 Outback 3.6 and then a little further down the line it will include the 2019 Ascent. That's only speculation, but I have not read of any changes to the CVT in new models.

One interesting line in the letter: "A one-year coverage period is available for all eligible vehicles listed above regardless of mileage and warranty start date and is effective now through September 30, 2019.
 

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Received notification of the CVT warranty extension on my 2018 Outback Limited 3.6, as expected. How far behind can the warranty extension on the Ascent CVT really be?

@Rub over on the Outback forum states it pretty well when he says:

"Recall = Mandatory disclosure and fix..

Warranty = No disclosure and fix only at customer request.

While SOA wants to counter the $8,000 bomb idea, I think there's more than a slight grain of truth that the CVTs aren't so lifetime trouble free.

It isn't as though Subie owners across all model lines are making up CVT problems going back years, just like they weren't making up consumption issues either. I'd be inclined to think these extended warranties are damage mitigation and purely product confidence driven.
"

I believe the TSB's for this CVT problem are mainly Subaru protecting their brand! One of the reasons there is no recall is that there is no fix. The CVT works find until it does not.
 

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There wasn't and isn't a problem...

Does anyone (dealer folks) know the problem of the CVT that's noted in the letter?
There isn't one. Biggest failure points of a CVT are:
  1. CVT Belt failures. Subaru uses a beefy CVT chain instead of a CVT belt to prevent such failures, so, it's literally impossible for a CVT belt in a Subaru to fail because there isn't one.
  2. Low hydraulic pressure in the drive or driven pulleys causing the chain or belt to eat the pulleys from continuous slippage. There's no reports of any widespread problems of that in the Subarus.

This was in response to quell people's worries, as noted above.

In digging like crazy through numerous forums, I've found some very few sporadic failures, but the vast majority of them are in WRXs with the earlier high torque CVT (rated for supposedly 330 ft-lbs torque) when WRX owners mod their engines and try to shove 400 ft-lbs of torque through it, causing the CVT chain to eat into the pulleys. The failure rate is supposed to be less than the EATs/EATTs. Look at people like Bruceyyy who beats the heck out of his off-roading with beastly tires.


Here's the "back end" TSB notice for the previous one describing the letter and reason. Bolded parts for emphasis by me. This is what the dealer service centers were told:
In the interest of customer satisfaction, Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA) is extending the New Car Limited Powertrain Warranty coverage for the Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) on the above listed models and model years from the original five (5) years or sixty thousand (60,000) miles (whichever comes first) to ten (10) years or one-hundred thousand (100,000) miles (whichever comes first). This change is not in response to any specific condition, rather it is to provide customers with added assurance regarding the function and overall performance of their CVT. Additionally, vehicles which are more than ten (10) years old or beyond one-hundred thousand (100,000) miles at the time customer notification letters are mailed are being offered additional coverage for a period of one-year from the date of the customer notification letters. A copy of the customer letter is attached to this bulletin as reference.
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16-107-17

So, the good news is, there isn't a problem. :grin:
 
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