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Subaru Recalls Crosstrek Hybrid to Fix 12V Battery Issue, 8,413 Units Affected

Back in March 2021, the Subaru Corporation received a report alleging the abnormal drain of the 12-volt battery in the Crosstrek Hybrid for the U.S. market. Corrosion was noted by the Subaru dealer in question. The vehicle had its battery harness replaced under warranty.
Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid 55 photos
Photo: Subaru / edited by autoevolution
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Fast forward to May 2021, and the Japanese automaker became aware of yet another technical report. On this occasion, the owner of a Crosstrek Hybrid experienced a loss of motive power while driving the vehicle. Subaru promptly started investigating the worrying condition. Come April 2022, a converter terminal mounting bracket with better isolation was introduced into production.

The original harness terminal is prone to electrolytic corrosion due to exposure to road salts. If left as is, the corrosion ultimately causes the terminal to break and lose connection from the 12-volt battery to the naturally-aspirated boxer engine of the Crosstrek Hybrid.

It's a little strange how Subaru chose to ignore this problem despite introducing a better isolated bracket into production in April 2022. The automaker continued to monitor field reports from May 2022 through January 2023 as per the recall report attached just below.

Subaru gingerly notes that it voluntarily recalled the Crosstrek Hybrid “out of an abundance of caution” rather than owning up to its mistake. A loss of motive power increases the risk of a crash, thus increasing the risk of injury to the driver and passengers of the vehicle.

Subaru is aware of no fewer than nine technical reports and 99 warranty claims in the U.S. market, but on the upside, this concern didn’t lead to any crashes or injuries. A grand total of 8,413 crossovers are called back, with 13 percent of them estimated to exhibit a certain degree of harness terminal corrosion. Dealers have been instructed to replace the converter terminal mounting bracket with the improved design from April 2022.

If the terminals exhibit any kind of corrosion, dealers will also replace the 12-volt output harness. Affected owners can expect to receive Subaru-branded envelopes by first-class no later than April 14th. The affected population of vehicles was produced in the period between November 16th, 2018 and April 8th, 2022.

2023 is the final model year of the current-generation Crosstrek Hybrid. A replacement is reportedly due by 2025, based on the recently revealed 2024 model.

The Crosstrek Hybrid, which is actually a plug-in hybrid, is the most expensive Crosstrek available to purchase stateside for the 2023 model year. It retails at $36,845 excluding destination charge and comes with lots of desirable features completely as standard.

8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment, 18-inch black and machine-finish alloy wheels, keyless access, push-button start, leather upholstery, blind-spot detection, and rear cross-traffic alert are a few of the highlight features in question. The plug-in hybrid component of the Crosstrek Hybrid’s powertrain isn’t a Subaru design. It actually originates from the Toyota Prius Prime.

The EPA-rated combined driving range in all-electric mode is 17 miles (27 kilometers), whereas total range is 480 miles (772 kilometers) with a full charge and a full tank. In terms of suck-squeeze-bang-blow, the Crosstrek Hybrid makes do with a total system output of 148 horsepower. The second motor generator, the one that supplies electrical drivetrain power output, puts out 148.9 pound-feet (201.8 Nm) of torque.
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 Download: Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid recall (PDF)

About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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