Subaru Outback - Problems, Statistics, and Analysis

Subaru Outback owners have reported a total of 4,492 problems for their cars built in the 24 model years listed in the chart below. The chart shows the number of problems reported across all service years for each given model year of the Subaru Outback. The 2011 Subaru Outback cars have the most problems reported (511 problems).

Table 1. Total number of problems by model year for Subaru Outback

  Common problems of Subaru Outback

The following chart shows the 27 most common problems for Subaru Outback cars. The number one most common problem is related to the vehicle's engine and engine cooling (541 problems). The second most common problem is related to the vehicle's power train (533 problems).

Table 2. Common problems of Subaru Outback

Problem Category Number of Problems
  Engine And Engine Cooling
541
  Power Train
533
  Air Bag
483
  Electrical System
347
  Vehicle Speed Control
339
  Service Brakes
282
  Visibility
280
  Equipment
277
  Exterior Lighting
237
  Suspension
236
   
  Steering
214
  Other Fuel System
139
  Structure
115
  Tire
98
  Gasoline Fuel System
89
  Wheel
72
  Seat Belt
50
  Electronic Stability Control
36
  Unknown Or Other
35
  Seats
31
  Latches/locks/linkage
21
  Traction Control System
13
  Parking Brake
9
  Child Seat
6
  Air Brake
4
  Interior Lighting
3
  Forward Collision Avoidance
2

  Compare Reliability Across Model Years Using PPMY Index

It would not be fair to compare the Subaru Outback of an older model year to newer model years since older vehicles have been in service longer and thus are expected to have more problems. In order to compare the reliability across Outback model years, we use the PPMY index which is defined as the problems reported per thousand vehicles per Year. A smaller PPMY index indicates greater reliability of the given model year cars.

    PPMY = P / S / Y * 1000,

where P = total problems reported during the life of a Subaru Outback model year; S = total units sold of the model year; Y = years since the debut of the model year (the age of the vehicle).

The results are shown in Table 3.

Table 3. Use PPMY Index to Compare Reliability Across Outback Model Years

Outback
Model Year
Problems Sales [1] Vehicle
Age
PPMY Index
  2017 112228,4641    
0.49
  2016 171151,5582    
0.56
  2015 310152,7113    
0.68
  2014 155123,0744    
0.31
  2013 197118,3935    
0.33
  2012 16697,6326    
0.28
  2011 511138,2977    
0.53
  2010 34076,5848    
0.55
  2009 11238,9179    
0.32
  2008 23167,43210    
0.34
  2007 13544,55911    
0.28
  2006 35058,80112    
0.50
  2005 30382,14113    
0.28

  Number of Problems Reported During the First Year

Another way to measure the reliability across the model years of the Subaru Outback is to use the total number of problems reported during the vehicle's first year in service, as shown in the Table 4.

Table 4. Number of problems in vehicle's; first service year

Model YearProblems Reported
  2018 Outback
81
  2017 Outback
65
  2016 Outback
66
  2015 Outback
173
  2014 Outback
56
  2013 Outback
57
  2012 Outback
28
  2011 Outback
67
  2010 Outback
104
  2009 Outback
9
  2008 Outback
12
  2007 Outback
13
  2006 Outback
9
  2005 Outback
26
  2004 Outback
15
  2003 Outback
12
  2002 Outback
14
  2001 Outback
28
  2000 Outback
36
  1999 Outback
19
  1998 Outback
17
  1997 Outback
8
  1996 Outback
2


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