How Common is the Subaru CVT Issue? A Comprehensive Guide to Understanding the Reliability of Subaru’s CVT Transmission

Subaru vehicles are renowned for their efficient and reliable performance, making them a popular choice for drivers all over the world. However, there have been concerns about a common issue with Subaru cars equipped with continuously variable transmission (CVT).

In this article, we will explain what a CVT transmission is and how it works, the extent and severity of the CVT issue in Subaru vehicles, possible causes of the issue and how to prevent it, the symptoms of a failing CVT transmission, solutions to fix or prevent the problem, and a comparative analysis of Subaru’s CVT transmission issues with other manufacturers.

What is a CVT Transmission and How Does It Work?

A continuously variable transmission (CVT) is an automatic transmission that can vary seamlessly through a continuous range of effective gear ratios. Unlike traditional automatic transmissions, which have fixed gear ratios, a CVT has a nearly infinite number of gear ratios within its range.

CVTs are designed for smooth and efficient performance since they can always maintain the optimal engine speed for the driving conditions. This feature translates to a higher fuel efficiency of vehicles equipped with CVT.

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Overview of Subaru’s CVT Transmission History and Reputation

Subaru has been using CVT technology since 1987, and its latest models still use CVT transmission. However, Subaru’s CVT history has not been without issues. Some drivers of Subaru vehicles have reported transmission problems relating to the CVT, casting doubts over the manufacturer’s reputation for reliability.

The Extent and Severity of the CVT Issue in Subaru Vehicles

Subaru’s CVT transmission issues are more prevalent in specific models such as Forester, Outback, Legacy, and Crosstrek built between 2010 and 2018. The issue experienced in these models is transmission failure, which can cost up to $8,000 to repair or replace. The problem stems from a defect in the transmission’s torque converter assembly, leading to a sudden loss of power, chain damage, overheating, and even vehicle stalling.

However, it is important to note that Subaru is taking steps to address the problem. The company has extended the powertrain warranty for several models up to 100,000 miles and ten years. This decision indicates Subaru’s commitment to addressing the issue and ensuring customer satisfaction.

Possible Causes and Prevention of Subaru’s CVT Issue

Several factors can contribute to Subaru’s CVT issue, including lack of maintenance, driving habits, and manufacturing defects. Regular maintenance of your vehicle’s transmission can prevent issues that may arise. Ensure that you always follow the recommended service interval and take your vehicle to a trusted mechanic who is well-versed with Subaru vehicles.

Symptoms of a Failing CVT Transmission

Subaru’s CVT issue is characterized by some noticeable symptoms, including warning lights on the dashboard, shuddering, difficulty accelerating, transmission slippage, stalling, and unusual noises from your vehicle’s transmission. It’s essential to pay attention to these signs and take immediate action to have your vehicle serviced by a trained Subaru mechanic.

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Solutions to Fix or Prevent the Issue

The most effective solution to fix the Subaru CVT transmission problem is to seek the services of a well-trained Subaru mechanic. They will diagnose the problem and come up with a suitable solution, which may range from repair to a complete replacement of the CVT transmission. Ensure that you work with a mechanic who has a good understanding of Subaru CVT transmissions.

Furthermore, the manufacturer offers warranties to cover the cost of transmission replacement or repair. The powertrain warranty, which varies between 5 to 10 years or 60,000 to 100,000 miles, depending on the model and year of production. You can also inquire from your dealer if there is any warranty extension to cover your particular Subaru model.

Comparative Analysis of Subaru’s CVT Transmission Issues with Other Manufacturers

Subaru’s CVT transmission issues are not unique to the manufacturer. Other manufacturers, such as Nissan and Honda, have also experienced problems with CVT transmissions. However, Subaru’s proactive approach to addressing the problem sets it apart from other manufacturers.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Are all Subaru models affected by the CVT transmission issue?

A: No, the CVT transmission issue is more prevalent in specific models such as Forester, Outback, Legacy, and Crosstrek, built between 2010 and 2018.

Q: Is it expensive to fix Subaru’s CVT transmission issue?

A: Yes, repairing or replacing a failing Subaru’s CVT transmission can cost up to $8,000. However, you may benefit from an extended powertrain warranty that covers a considerable portion of the repair cost.

Q: Can the Subaru CVT transmission issue be prevented?

A: Yes, you can prevent Subaru’s CVT transmission issue by following the recommended service interval, regular maintenance, and good driving habits.

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In summary, Subaru’s CVT transmission issue is a significant one, and it is prevalent in specific models built between 2010 and 2018. Although the repair cost can be quite expensive, Subaru is committed to addressing the problem by extending warranties and offering other solutions to their customers. It’s essential to understand the symptoms and prevention measures of Subaru’s CVT transmission issue, and regularly maintaining your vehicle can go a long way in preventing it.

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Joseph Weaver

With a background in engineering and a passion for cars, Joseph brings a unique perspective to our blog. He's particularly interested in the technology and innovation behind Subaru's advanced safety features, and his articles on this topic are always insightful and informative. When he's not writing, he enjoys playing video games and spending time with his family.

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