Subaru Outback and Impreza recall stems from improper torque wrench technique


If you thought you’ve had some rough weeks at work lately, consider the worker at Subaru‘s plant in Indiana whose misuse of a torque wrench led to a recall of nearly 400 vehicles.

In a filing with NHTSA, Subaru said 314 Outbacks and 69 Imprezas could have a loose nut on the transmission select lever cable.

The document explains that Subaru found the problem during assembly line sampling and quickly isolated the issue to “a single associate assigned to a specific production line … using an improper torque wrench technique” during the person’s first week doing that task.

An internal investigation concluded that the training process for the task was correct and that all other workers were using their wrenches properly, Subaru told NHTSA.

A spokesman for the automaker wouldn’t confirm to Automotive News whether the under-torquing employee remains on the job but said the company wasn’t trying to point fingers.

“There was absolutely no intent to assign blame to a single associate,” the spokesman said in an emailed statement. “Instead, that level of detail was deemed necessary and relevant to document exactly how the scope of the issue was confidently identified. The purpose of referencing the singular associate was to establish certainty for the number of vehicles affected — not to establish fault. We’re a team at SIA. Together, we all share in setbacks and successes.”



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