The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released an official recall notice Tuesday of more than 200,000 Subaru Legacy and Outback sedans and wagons.
The recall notice states that, “salt water could splash on the brake lines through a gap in the fuel tank protector, resulting in excessive corrosion of the brake lines.”
NHTSA said corrosion could cause brake fluid to leak, resulting in longer vehicle stopping distances, which could increase the risk of a crash.
The recall is limited to cars that are currently or formerly registered in the 20 “salt belt” states, plus Washington, D.C., mainly in the Northeast and Midwest. Most of the recalled vehicles were built at its U.S. assembly plant in Lafayette, Indiana.
McHale said, “No reports, accidents, injuries or incidents of failure have occurred” as a result of the issue, and that the Japanese-based company was simply being “super conservative.”
“We keep vehicles in our test facility in Japan, and one of those vehicles started to exhibit some corrosion on the brake line,” he said. Subaru explained that this problem was discovered (by its Japanese parent company) during an internal testing program.
Subaru in its NHTSA recall filing said vehicle brake lines could be perforated after exposure to salt over seven or more winter seasons.
As we have previously reported, Subarus have been the subject of several recalls so far this year.
In January, the automaker recalled more than 630,000 vehicles of various models due to a fire risk. At the time, Subaru said that only about 54,000 vehicles were expected to actually need repairs.
Last month, Subaru announced the recall of approximately 50,000 vehicles at risk of automatically starting by themselves.
Company spokesman Michael McHale said that Subaru was in the process of tabulating the total number of cars subject to the recall, consisting of vehicles from model years 2005 to 2009.
Subaru plans to notify owners and fix the problem at dealerships free of charge. Dealers will rustproof the affected area with anti-corrosion wax and, if necessary, replace the brake lines.
For more information, contact a Gacovino Lake attorney at 1-800-246-HURT (4878).