WHAT YOU CAN DO
Learning of Other Complaints: You can get summaries of auto complaints & service bulletins from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) by the Internet or by mail. To access complaint summaries for particular makes, models & years, visit NHTSA’s Internet website at www.nhtsa.dot.gov. Or for $20-40, you can get a computer printout of complaints or service bulletins from NHTSA’s Technical Information Services, which can be contacted through NHTSA’s Auto Safety Hotline at 800-424-9393 or 888-327-4236. Specify make, model & year as the more specific the request, the less expensive the printout.
Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs): Subaru publishes TSBs to help dealers diagnose & repair problems on vehicles. Some dealers will let you view TSBs. Some state Lemon or Secret Warranty Laws require manufacturers or dealers to make TSBs available on your vehicle. You can access TSB summaries via NHTSA’s Website at www.nhtsa.dot.gov. NHTSA’s Technical Information Services, which can be contacted through NHTSA’s Auto Safety Hotline at 800-424-9393 or 888-327-4236, can also send a particular TSB once you identify it from NHTSA’s Website or its computer printout. ALLDATA provides free access to TSB summaries & sells copies of TSBs listed on its Website. For your use, we have listed some of the more comprehensive TSBs on your vehicle. Check the above sources for other TSBs.
Recalls & Investigations: Call NHTSA’s toll-free Auto Safety Hotline at 800-424-9393 or 888-327-4236 (in Washington DC 202-366-0123) or visit NHTSA’s website at www.nhtsa.dot.gov-recalls and www.nhtsa.dot.gov-investigations respectively.
Small Claims Court: Go to small claims for advice on using small claims court to recover repair & other expenses. The Lemon Book (Moyer-Bell 1990) by Ralph Nader has an entire chapter on small claims court strategy, a state-by-state index & a chapter on your legal rights to help you better argue your case in court. You can order the book for $17.50 from CAS Publications.
Lemon Lawsuits: If you have to sue Subaru over a lemon, go to CAS-Lawyers for a list of attorneys specializing in lemon law.
Complaint to Subaru: Write Takao Saito, President, Subaru of America, Inc, Subaru Place, PO Box 6000, Cherry Hill NJ 08034-6000 or call Subaru at 800-782-2783.
Using Better Business Bureau Arbitration: Subaru uses BBB in some states to arbitrate original owners’ requests for repair reimbursement, an order that Subaru “buy-back” your car, or both. Program is not legally binding on consumer, so you may reject bad decision & go to court. Program is limited to states where arbitration is required under state lemon law. Call 800-955-5100 for BBB program. The Lemon Book has a chapter to guide you through BBB Arbitration and can help get “buy-backs” & reimbursements. The Lemon Book is available from CAS for $17.50 from CAS Publications.
Secret Warranty Disclosure Laws: Four states (CA, CT, VA & WI) have laws requiring automakers to disclose any secret warranties on their cars. Contact your state attorney general for information or to support such laws. Little Secrets of the Auto Industry (Moyer-Bell 1994) by CAS is devoted to secret warranties, how to find them & use them. Little Secrets is available for $17.50 from CAS Publications.
Supporting Subaru Recall Efforts: Help us force the government to protect consumers by writing your Senators and Representative in Congress, urging them to contact NHTSA & the Federal Trade Commission on your defects in your Subaru vehicle. Your local library has names of your representatives; write them c/o US Senate (or House), Washington DC 20510 (or 20515). Find and/or e-mail them at www.house.gov/writerep/ and www.senate.gov.
Support CAS’ Efforts: File a complaint with CAS which will be used to pressure Subaru to take responsibility for defects in its vehicles. Become a CAS member by making a tax-deductible contribution to help us in our fight on your behalf against Subaru and the other auto giants.