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Drive Train Issue

I have a 2003 Forester with a manual transmission that I love except for a problem that began, quite infrequently, a year after we bought the car and which has steadily increased in frequency.

The problem:

Normally when I remove my foot from the gas pedal, the engine smoothly winds down. Now about half the time, the engine momentum will abruptly drop and I feel a pronounced jerking or “lash” in the drive train. I’ve been to three dealers and none have been able to help me.

The car behaves muck like an older car with a carburetor and a dash pot on the throttle linkage to prevent the throttle from turning off too quickly. What ever performs that function in the Subaru is intermittent. I suspect the problem is electrical but for the life of me I can’t figure out what it would be.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

/Chris in Los Gatos

Have the engine mounts checked first. Do park on level ground, put transmission in third and push the car back and forth. If you see the engine moving a lot (two inches or more); you have engine mount problems. Less than two inches and there may still be problems. Do this without setting the parking brake. This works better with transverse mounted engines. (Non-Subaru).

Thanks for the suggestion. Just tried it and no I could not see the engine move at all.