Because Subaru Can't Turn Back Time, Some Owners Stand to Gain a New Ascent

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

A recall serious enough to necessitate the replacement of a car is rare, but Subaru should be glad it caught the problem before more faulty vehicles left the factory.

Over the course of eight days in July, 293 Ascents from the 2019 model year made it off the assembly line while potentially missing a full complement of welds — hardly something the automaker can just go back and touch up.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, key spot welds on the midsize crossover’s B-pillar may have been missed, all thanks to an improperly programmed welding robot. As robots don’t program themselves (and thank goodness for that), we can chalk this issue up to human error.

Of the 293 vehicles recalled by Subaru, only nine found their way to owners. The rest, Subaru says, were either in transit or sitting on dealer lots. A stop-sale order covers those vehicles.

“If some of the spot welds around the B-pillar were missed, the strength of the vehicle’s body may be reduced, potentially increasing the risk of injury in the event of a crash,” a Subaru spokesman told Consumer Reports. “This is why we are replacing the vehicles and not repairing.”

The automaker discovered the issue during an inspection of a new Ascent on July 21st. Not all of the 293 vehicles left the factory without key welds, Subaru claims. Regardless, recall notices hit mailboxes this month. If you suspect you could be among the unlucky nine, punch your VIN into to see if your new Ascent stands to gain an odometer rollback (of sorts).

It could be an opportunity to change that paint color you have mixed feelings about.

[Image: © 2018 Matthew Guy/TTAC]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • VW4motion VW4motion on Aug 15, 2018

    Great, at least they are not pretending nothing is happening. Hence, toyota for rusted frame and gas pedal issues and mazda for rust and skyactiv carbon build up. Yes, this does sound a bit ridiculous missing build welds. And good they are not pretending it did not happen.

    • See 9 previous
    • TwoBelugas TwoBelugas on Aug 16, 2018

      @Pete Zaitcev Toyota had real issues with early DBW throttle systems around 05. I know because my 05 Camry used to apply heavy throttle on its own at stoplights with my foot firmly on the brake pedal nowhere near the accelerator pedal. I went to the dealer 4 times before calling their regional corporate and they finally replaced some parts but they refused to tell me what was going on, in any case after the repair the self-surge was gone. Years later I heard about the other cars having issues and while I know in some cases it's driver error, the mid-2000s Toyotas did have real with the DBW throttle system. My best guess was a part defect or assembly error that introduced a short or debris that created false signals to the ECU indicating throttle was being applied when I wasn't on the accelerator pedal at all.

  • APaGttH APaGttH on Aug 15, 2018

    No, it is here, here, here, here, here, and here. Not here here here here here here!

  • Inside Looking Out Inside Looking Out on Aug 15, 2018

    How nobody mentioned Ford yet? DW?

  • Ryoku75 Ryoku75 on Aug 16, 2018

    Since we're talking about Subaru here, can anyone fill me in on the latest "rod knock" troubles running around Subaru?

    • See 1 previous
    • Bullnuke Bullnuke on Aug 16, 2018

      Ryoku75 - How about a website or reference to this. First I've heard of it.