Not sure I trust JD Power surveys as they have sponsors, probably
competitors in the industry. Consumer Reports who only makes money from
their subscribers gives Subaru top marks.
A Subaru salesman told me that they were the most profitable automobile
company. Maybe in part due to saving in advertising and promotion. We
have three dealers in my area and none of them advertise but sales are
The rules says: Caveat emptor, "Let the buyer beware."
The problem is many manufacturers pay less
attention to quality nowadays. I think the
late 80s and 1990s where the time when best
quality cars were made.
The general pattern of manufacture also
car manufacture is first to produce a superior
product, at relatively low profit margin,
make a name for yourself, then raise prices
margins, and capitalize on fame.
Then continue profiting by reducing investment
in plant/people/equipment, let quality slowly
slip, while enjoying continued sales growth.
Next step, face problems, need for turning
around the deteriorating production/business,
satisfy need for substantial new investment
or make decision to liquidate, exit business
I think Subaru made its best product in
the 1990s up to early 2000s.
Of course manufacturers are concderned about quality. Please present
some evidence that shows that they pay less attention to quality now.
One of the issues that is often addressed in surveys of new car
experiences is that cars today are vastly most complicated than cars of
the 1990's and early 2000's. Many of the complaints about new cars
relate to the advanced electronics, not the mechanics. Even when things
like the entertainment systems work correctly owners complain in
surveys about how hard they are to figure out and how expensive GPS map
upgrades are, not that the car itself is bad.
Who said they are not? Quality is a continuum,
what I suggest is that quality fluctuates, is
highest when manufacturers work to establish
themselves in the market, then slides as they
conquer market share.
For example, Hyundai in the 90s, and early 2000s
in the US, was trying very hard to wrestle away
market share from Japanese and paid great attention
to quality, constantly improving it.
Today when it has finally permeated the market,
it can afford to be less vigilant, hence we see
deterioration, more than a million engines quite
recently recalled due to manufacturing defects,
also excessive use of plastics, plastic oil pans,
transmission pans, manifolds, supposedly even some
parts of Hyundai engines are now made of plastic.
Quality is lesser that that of several years,
or a decade ago.
And it is not only Hyundai, other manufacturers
follow a similar pattern, Subaru among them.
True, but even controlling for that. Here is a link
telling about 1.2 mln Hyundais recalled because of
failures of simple metalurgy, faulty machining of metal
(!) not some high-tech related issues.
Included are the 2013?2014 Hyundai Sonata and Santa Fe, 2011?
?2013 Kia Sportage, 2011?2014 Optima, and 2012?2014 Soren
to. During machining of the engine crankshaft and crankpins, metal shavings
may have been left within the crankshaft oil passages, and the crankpins t
hemselves may be too rough on the edges. As a result, oil may be blocked an
d cause the connecting rod bearings to wear, which would then cause them to
fail and seize the whole engine. That, of course, would cause the car to s
tall during driving.
Subaru has lost how many class-action engine failure
Three or four now. Again not some high-tech related
issues but failing engine internals, rod bearings,
in WRX/XT engines.
It is a similar pattern.
We don't know the exactly the cause, as Subaru prefers
to quickly settle suits without revealing the true cause.
I personally, having read many texts about the issue,
suspect inadequate engine block cleaning, flushing
after block is cast. Likely, in my opinion, sand is not
adequately flushed away from all engine crevices during
standard flushing procedure, ...later in use when a small
grain detaches from somewhere it can lead to a rod bearing
failure. This concerns only so called closed-deck engine
blocks, found in turbo engines. These particular engines
are made using sand casting forms.
"... This concerns only so called closed-deck engine
You're scaring me, Basia, because I was planning to buy a turbo engined
XV when I move to Europe next month. Of course if somehow the 2020
models show up by then and there is a hybrid XV among them, then that
would be my choice.
A bunch cut.
Remember the head gasket issues? I have a 99 2.5 RS. Subie's
solution was to send me a bottle of sealant. I eventually took it to the
local independent repair shop to have it fixed right.
By the way, whatsa matter with today's kids? This kid thought he
by Impreza. He left a couple notes and eventually found me at home.
interest when I said 5 speed. "I can't drive one."
Its the previous generation 2.5L turbo engines
that are problematic. The newer 2.0L turbos
seem to be OK.
I got spoiled driving in the US., western US,
where roads are wide, and spaces still empty.
If I were to go to Poland I'd be looking for
a small car. Streets are just too narrow,
I can't believe how people drive bigger cars
and even SUV's there nowadays. When I lived
there in the 80s it was mostly tiny Fiats
that people drove.
You may have an eye on the Honda Urban EV,
it is about to debut in Europe. Seems like
a cute litte car.
True, Crosstrek is a great car for the
winter, also for country driving where
roads may be bumpy or muddy if unpaved
- lots of rain everywhere in Europe.
My preference is for manuverability and
zippiness of a small urban car. Fiat
500X AWD would be ideal if it weren't
Btw, it is one of the reasons I cling
to my 2000 Impreza 2.2L coupe. Such
a versatile car; great on the highway,
on backroads, economical, and superb
in city traffic, San Francisco parking.
I think Subaru is missing a small car