Lawsuit Investigation Looks into Subaru Infotainment System Problems
Last Updated on December 13, 2022
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are no longer investigating this matter. The information here is for reference only. A list of open investigations and lawsuits can be viewed here.
At A Glance
- This Alert Affects:
- Anyone who bought or leased a 2020-2022 Subaru vehicle and had problems with their touch screen infotainment system.
- What’s Going On?
- Drivers have complained that the infotainment system freezes, goes black, stops responding or displays dead pixels, and attorneys are looking into whether a defect is to blame. It’s possible that a class action lawsuit could be filed against Subaru.
- How Could a Class Action Help?
- A class action lawsuit could help drivers get back money for repair and replacement costs and potentially force Subaru to provide a free fix.
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are investigating whether a defect is to blame for apparent problems with the infotainment system in 2020-2022 Subaru vehicles.
Drivers have reported that the touch screens in their cars freeze, go black, stop responding or display dead pixels, and some have complained that the issues continued even after Subaru released software updates for the infotainment system.
What Problems Are Being Reported?
Subaru drivers have complained that their cars’ touch screens malfunction, including by freezing up, blacking out, lagging or not responding.
According to complaints posted in online forums, these issues render the infotainment system’s features – including navigation, radio, cruise control, EyeSight driver assist, back-up camera, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto – unusable.
Below is a sampling of online complaints from drivers [sic throughout]:
…Then there is the technically challenged infotainment system….it’s slow, cumbersome and unreliable. Every time I start the car I hold my breath, as it often ‘freezes up’ and is unresponsive for varying periods of time. I’ve also been on road trips and the audio totally goes out for several hours (I get a message that it’s updating). Every time I take it into the dealership they do a software update….which is code for we don’t have a clue…”
— Ken B., 2020 Subaru Outback, Edmunds.com
…The other serious issue that I’ve been experiencing is that while driving the entire system goes black. Everything shuts down, navigation, cruise control, eyesight and radio. On a recent trip through Virginia and Maryland this happened 10 times. At one point I was exiting the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel in Virginia and had no idea where I was going. It took several minutes for the system to reboot and then I had to reenter my destination while driving on a highway. The last time the system went black on this same trip everything I had stored, favorite addresses, last destinations, phone book, iPhone pairing, etc. were lost…”
— Howard L., 2021 Subaru Outback, Edmunds.com
I have had lots of problems with my center console tech. It stops working, freezes, goes black, and sometimes just has a mind of its own. I have had it in the shop twice, the first time they told me it was an iPhone compatibly issue, which was not true the second time the guy was honest and said it was a known issue and they would order a new one but it was back ordered. It has been months, I called and they never ordered it! Still having issues, it operates literally everything! AC, radio, Navi, even some of the safety features shut down when it stops working…”
— AngieC, 2021 Subaru Outback, Edmunds.com
…The car has been in the service center SIX times for touchscreen failures. Update performed - still issues, unit replaced - still issues, audio control unit replaced - still issues. After the dealership had my car for 20 days now, I receive a call stating that Subaru and Technical Support has come to a conclusion; good news? So I thought. There is an issue with the pre-downloaded Pandora App and Apple CarPlay. The interference also messes with all of the Eyesight systems and cause them to go offline. The apps are interfering with each other and that is what is causing the failures. They don’t have a fix for it and I am being told that I will just have to deal with it until a fix/update is released….”
— RJWV90, 2020 Subaru Legacy, Edmunds.com
I have a 2020 and I have a high failure rate. I’ve had the whole unit replaced under warranty and I think it might happen again. Frozen screen, crashed screen, completely blacked out, all of these issues reoccurring.”
— KavleasGR, 2020 Subaru Outback, Reddit.com
I had a lot of trouble with my 2020 Premium Outback touchscreen. The screen would go out, blank, no audio sometimes. The buttons wouldn’t respond sometimes. Sirius only worked about half the time. Took it to Suby 10+ times, updates, etc. They couldn’t fix it. I got so tired of it that I traded it in.”
— Clear_Spinach9506, 2020 Subaru Outback, Reddit.com
I have a 2022 I don’t know the exact version. My issues is the lag of opening the radio or setting my climate each touch takes at least 5-6 seconds and sometimes a good 10 seconds after touching the screen. My CarPlay continually disconnects, profile doesn’t load or recognize the user. Then the random freezing crashes and it just powering off making me have to power off my car then restarting it to fix it.”
— Bubbly-Internal-3915, 2022 Subaru Legacy, Reddit.com
Owners and lessees who attempted to have their vehicles repaired were sometimes told that a software update would fix the problem, but some drivers have reported that their touch screen still had issues even after it was updated.
So far, Subaru has not issued a recall for the potentially affected vehicles.
How Could a Class Action Help?
A class action lawsuit could help Subaru drivers get back money for repairs. It could also force Subaru to recall the cars or offer a free fix.
For example, Subaru agreed to settle a class action lawsuit in August 2019 that claimed the infotainment system in its 2018 Forester, 2018 Outback, 2018 Crosstrek, 2018 Legacy, 2017-2018 Imprezas and 2018 BRZ was defective.
The settlement, valued at $6.25 million, provided reimbursement for repairs, an extended warranty, and compensation for repair delays caused by parts being on backorder, among other benefits.
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