WTF? Got a letter from Subaru saying the CVT transmission may fail


Please explain the difference to me. Bear with me, I’m in the flash card section.


“The problem is, if our transmission fails at 101,000 miles we get to pay thousands of dollars for their screw-up.”


Man, I could paint my whole house in one stroke with that brush you’re carrying!
In reality, it means there is a POTENTIAL for early failure which a few people have already pointed out the difference but you choose to ignore. Secondly, it could very well be that IF the issue is going to show up, it will manifest itself early on or not at all. Finally, I see a lot of energy and angst about something that not only hasn’t happened but unlikely will happen. If it does, you’ll have something to rant about. Until then, it’s just blowing hot air and potentially affecting your health. Calm down. Ohhhmmm, Ohmmmm :wink:


This obviously bothers you a lot. Just sell it now, or sometime before 100k. You’re not married to it.


What makes you think it is a design failure, not an implementation failure?

If it was a design failure, I could imagine ALL relevant CVTs will be affected, not particular years in production.


A friend of mine had an Accord sedan, and Honda extended the warranty on his transmission (not a CVT) to 100k miles because of a higher-than-normal failure rate on Accords of his model year. He never experienced trans failure, and the car performed perfectly right up to the day when it was t-boned at ~110k miles. Of course, he did change the trans fluid every 30k miles, despite the absence of that requirement in the official maintenance schedule.

Not every sample–of anything–is going to experience failure, just because some of them did.


101K, 120K, 150K, what’s the point where you say the car has performed as expected and any further failure is not covered under warranty?

There’s another thread here about a component failure on a brand new car and whether lemon law applies. It’s interesting to note that most lemon laws consider the useful life of a car 120,000 miles.


I received an extended warranty notice for the CVT a year ago for my 2010 Outback. It stated it covered it for any mileage until June of 2018. Never had a problem shifting but one time I had to slam on the brakes to avoid someone pulling in front of me. It stalled. I then discovered what the warranty extension was for. For a car that was 8 years old with 170,000 miles on it I probably wouldn’t have complained much about the failure but now I am thrilled to own a Subaru. They did the $2000.00 fix for free and now my CVT has been refurbished with 170,000 miles on it. Good to go much longer I would hope! Otherwise that car has been really inexpensive to run.


Tell that to my loan officer.


Good question. If I were Subaru I’d find out what the average life of a CVT is and use that. It’s not 100K I assure you. The days when cars are used up at 100K are long gone, brought about by computer design and manufacturing techniques using better metallurgy along with computer-controlled drivetrains and reliable fuel injection systems.

I’m old enough to remember when no one got 100K out of a starter, alternator, radiator, brake master cylinder and wheel cylinders, air conditioner. Now it’s commonplace.


Stalling the car did what to the trans? You lost me there.


The car stalled when lafn slammed on the brakes. That indicated a problem with the trans, which Subaru fixed under a warranty extension.


Another good question that I wish could answer. The CVT was implemented so I’m unsure what constitutes a failure. Still Subaru’s responsibility same as a design defect.


OK I’m still lost. Cars stall because of lack of fuel.


That can do it. This one stalled because of a fault in the transmission, according to the carmaker.

Possibly the trans did not release from the crankshaft - similar to having a manual trans in gear and putting on the brake and bringing the car to halt without pushing in the clutch pedal.


Typically there’s a lockup on automatic transmissions (regular and CVT) once you’re up to speed, so sounds like this one didn’t release.


There was a discussion three years ago about the torque converter problem, several people paid for the repair before the warranty extension was offered.


First step is to sit down with the Service Manager at the dealer you bought it from and ask him to help you.

If that fails, the next step is to contact the Regional Service Manager. Manufacturers even make that contact available in your owners manual because the RSM is often quite helpful when the SM isn’t.


Who are you replying to? Aren’t you the one with the trouble-prone car?


I’m replying to you and yes I have a CVT with a possible problem.