Sadly, around 5,000 crossover wagons and sedan cars have been recalled recently for a potential fault involving the driving range readings. Subaru Australia has issued the recall specifically for the 2018 Subaru Outback and Liberty models. Why has this happened and how could this affect you? Letís delve a little deeper and find out whatís going on.
The Combination Meter Display (CMD)
Subaru has reported that the Outback and Liberty models could have a programming error. This faulty code is located in the CMD, and this can cause the driving range indicator to be less accurate. The CMD is vital to get an accurate distance for refuelling purposes, and a bad reading could leave a driver stranded with no fuel. However, Subaru is keen to point out that the low fuel warning light still illuminates if the level of fuel drops to a critically low point.
This May Affect Certain Drivers More
Many drivers of modern cars that are replete with all manner of visual feedback devices can quickly begin to rely on them. This is also the case with the CMD and those drivers paying attention to the low fuel warning light will not get caught out. Having said that, the CMD is a useful piece of equipment and Subaru understand that the error needs to be corrected. After all, if the car does run out of fuel when you least expect it you the engine may well stall and it cannot be restarted. Under certain conditions, this could be a safety issue for the vehicle occupants and other road users.
The Scale of the Problem
Subaru has recalled 4,096 Outback and 1,187 Liberty models so far, and a VIN list of affected vehicles can be easily found online. The affected build dates are the beginning of the MY18 production cycle up until the 1st August this year. The owners have been contacted and advised to not rely on their CMD for an accurate driving range figure. The necessary CMD reprogramming will not be available until February 2019 at the earliest. Subaru Australia has made it clear that they will be contacting the owners of the affected cars again once the systems are in place to fix the problem. Of course, this work will be carried out free of charge, and every effort will be made to get the problem fixed quickly.
What Happens Next?
At the moment itís going to be a waiting game until the reprogramming can begin sometime in February next year. Until that time, drivers of affected Outback and Liberty models will have to be careful in how the fill and use their cars. Relying on the CMD at this moment is obvious a bad idea, and it will be necessary to check the low fuel warning light more often. Keeping your fuel topped off will also be an effective strategy to avoid becoming stranded.