The Japanese automaker has found out that the steering column on some of its models may fail, as it may have been improperly machined.
One Subaru driver has recently reported a steering failure on his 2016 model year Outback, also being forced to tow the car back to the dealer. Following an investigation over the issue, the automaker has concluded that an incorrect setting of a tool used in production of the steering column may have resulted in improper machining of one of the steering column shafts. As a result, “the steering column shaft may not engage and it may rotate freely and the driver would lose the ability to steer the vehicle.”
There are 48,500 model year 2016-2017 Legacy and Outback vehicles manufactured February 29, 2016, to May 6, 2016, affected by this problem in North America. To fix it, dealers will have to inspect the lot number of the steering column and replace it if necessary. Until the vehicles have been inspected, Subaru advises its customer owners not to drive their cars.
To prevent similar incidents in the future, the automaker said the steering column shaft would be machined to meet original specifications intended for this part and, starting from May 6, potentially defective ones are individually screened, via examination of the lot number, prior to fitting them into the vehicle. The recall starts today, on May 13, and Subaru will notify owners over the safety campaign.