Will Your Subaru Navigation System Work in Canada: A Guide to Ensure Smooth Driving on Canadian Roads

If you are a proud owner of a Subaru car and planning to go on a smooth drive on Canadian roads, you may be wondering whether your navigation system will work there. Navigation systems have come a long way and can be an essential tool for drivers, but their effectiveness can vary from region to region due to several factors. This guide will provide you with an overview of the Subaru navigation system, discuss factors that may impact its functionality, and outline steps you can take to ensure a smooth driving experience while using it in Canada.

Overview of Subaru Navigation System Technology

Subaru navigation systems come built into the car, providing drivers with turn-by-turn directions that typically use GPS data. The GPS data is combined with map data, stored in the car’s system, to provide real-time traffic updates and route options. Additionally, Subaru’s STARLINK infotainment system allows the driver to access news, music, and weather, along with other features.

Factors Affecting Navigation System Functionality in Canada

While your Subaru navigation system is designed to provide reliable directions, there may be factors that can impact its functionality while traveling in Canada. These factors may include map differences, language settings, and local regulations.

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Map Differences

When driving in Canada, it’s important to consider that the maps on your navigation system may differ from those in the United States. This could affect the accuracy of the directions you receive and potentially cause confusion. It’s essential to ensure that your navigation maps are updated before your trip to Canada. Otherwise, you may need to purchase an updated map for the country.

Language Settings

Canada is a bilingual country with both English and French as official languages. If your navigation system is set to English, it will work just fine in the majority of Canada. However, if you plan to drive in Quebec, it’s important to ensure that your system is set to French in order to receive the correct directions in that area. Make sure to change the settings ahead of time, so you don’t need to mess around with the language settings while driving.

Local Regulations

Canada has a different set of driving laws and regulations than the United States. While these differences may not affect your navigation system’s functionality, it’s still essential to familiarize yourself with them to ensure you’re driving legally and safely. The driving age can vary by province, and some areas may have different speed limits or rules about using cell phones while driving.

Steps to Ensure Smooth Navigation System Functionality in Canada

To ensure that your Subaru navigation system functions correctly while traveling in Canada, there are several steps you can take before your trip.

Map Updates

As previously mentioned, it’s essential to update your navigation system maps before your trip. You can download the latest maps onto a USB drive or SD card and use the "Map Update" function under "Settings" to update your Subaru’s maps. Doing so will help your system provide accurate directions throughout the country.

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Language Settings

If you plan on driving in Quebec, ensure that your navigation system language is set to French before your trip. It’s easy to change the language setting through the "Language" function under "Settings." Always make sure to double-check the language setting on the navigation system before you start driving in a new area.

Mobile Device Navigation Apps

Another option for navigating in Canada is using mobile device navigation apps. Many apps are available that offer turn-by-turn directions offline or online, often with real-time traffic updates and alternative route options. Examples include Google Maps, Waze, and HERE WeGo Navigation. Such apps can provide peace of mind in case of any navigation system errors.


Can I use my Subaru navigation system in Canada?

Yes, you can use your Subaru navigation system in Canada. However, it’s essential to update your maps and ensure that your language settings match the area you’ll be driving in.

Do I need an internet connection for my Subaru navigation system to work in Canada?

No, you don’t need an internet connection for your Subaru navigation system to work in Canada. However, your navigation system will not be able to provide real-time traffic updates and alternative route suggestions without an internet connection.

Can I use mobile device navigation apps in Canada instead of my Subaru navigation system?

Yes, mobile device navigation apps such as Google Maps, Waze, and HERE WeGo Navigation can be used in Canada instead of your Subaru navigation system. These apps offer real-time traffic updates and navigational assistance, which can be useful in case of any navigation system errors.

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Your Subaru navigation system can be a handy tool when driving in Canada, but it’s essential to understand any differences in maps, language settings, and local regulations beforehand. Taking steps to update your maps and ensure your language settings match your location can help ensure a smooth driving experience while using the navigation system. If you encounter any issues, mobile device navigation apps can provide assistance and peace of mind. Keep this guide in mind when preparing for a trip to Canada with your Subaru car.

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Billy Covington

With a passion for all things automotive, Billy is our go-to expert on Subaru performance upgrades and modifications. He's been featured in several car magazines and blogs, and his extensive knowledge and expertise make him a valuable member of our team. When he's not working on cars, he enjoys playing guitar and writing music.

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