Subaru tells owners: Stop driving new Outback and Legacy until inspection

(May 16, 2016) DETROIT — Subaru has announced that about 52,000 2016 and 2017 model year Legacy and Outback vehicles may have a steering problem, and advised owners to discontinue driving them until they can be inspected.

The company is recalling the cars and SUVs and also has told dealers to stop selling them until they’re repaired. About 22,000 of the cars have been sold in the U.S., with the remainder still on dealer lots, Subaru says.

In documents posted Friday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Subaru said the steering columns may have been manufactured improperly by a parts supplier. The columns may not engage properly with the rest of the steering system. “If this were to occur, the steering wheel may rotate freely and the driver would lose the ability to steer the vehicle,” the documents said.

The problem was discovered May 3 when the owner of a 2016 Outback reported trouble. Subaru says there have been no crashes or injuries. The Outback is Subaru’s second-best selling vehicle.

Dealers will send technicians to a customer’s location to inspect the steering columns. If they weren’t manufactured properly, they will be replaced starting in mid-May. The inspection will take about 10 minutes and repair will take about an hour, Subaru said.

Subaru will supply loaner cars.