So what is a recall, and how does it affect me?

By Carl Cunanan Philippine Daily Inquirer November 14,2018

Our automotive world is increasingly quick. We, as consumers, demand a lot—and we want it fast.

We are already used to beta tests and constant updates, and while we aren’t exactly used to these in our cars, it is becoming increasingly common.

A recall may be meant to address any number of things. In the case of Subaru, there have recently been notifications addressing two separate issues.

Official releases from Motor Image Pilipinas, the official distributor of Subaru Cars, have come to the media and the public.

The first recall is addressed with the following statement: “The recall for those with valve spring issues involves vehicles manufactured from 16 January 2012 – 14 May 2013. The affected models are the 2013 Model Year (MY) BRZ, 2013-2014MY Legacy/Outback, 2012-2014MY Forester and 2012-2014MY Impreza/XV equipped with the FA20 engine or FB20 engine.

“The move is a precaution against the possibility that under stress, the valve springs in the affected engines may fracture. This could result in an unusual noise coming from the engine, the engine stalling and not being able to restart.”

As stated, this is clearly something potentially dangerous if it happens at speed. Subaru and Motor Image Pilipinas Inc. are acting responsibly to correct these issues, and that is good.

This type of thing seems to be getting increasingly common to almost all car brands, and it may well be a function of the fact that the brands are now more constantly testing even well into the life of the product.

Additionally, increased computerization and complication are part of the vehicle itself, the processes of production and even the ways by which things are measured and monitored.

All these things that are meant to make cars safer for us and the environment may well also mean that we have our lives disrupted a little more often.

Another recall from Subaru has to do in particular with the increased use of technology.

Their official release is as follows: “At the same time, Subaru has also announced a recall of the 2018 MY Legacy/Outback vehicles, manufactured before 1 August 2018, for potential issues with multi-information displays.

“A programming issue may lead to inaccuracies between what is shown on the multi-information display, with regards to the amount of fuel left, and the actual drivable distance left. Subaru is taking a precautionary measure to ensure that information on the fuel gauge and the amount of drivable distance left is accurate.”

This is a clearer example of how technology both helps and complicates.

We benefit from these monitors and displays, and the fact that they are all so interconnected.

However, this also means that little quirks can have far-reaching consequences than ever.

What do we do? For now, we follow the instructions of Subaru and Motor Image Pilipinas. We wait for them to contact us, or perhaps we feel better by contacting them ourselves to see what we should expect.

In general though, we see this type of thing happening with increasing frequency from all brands.

The need for constant improvement is nothing new. You would often find your Mercedes-Benz returning from regular maintenance with a different radio, or a new steering wheel.

This frustrates collectors that want perfect examples of the showroom state of their cars, but the automakers just always want you to have the best car possible.

This constant correction and adjustment can be seen as a good thing, though that is admittedly hard when you are told your beloved ride needs to go in for an unexpected check or transplant.

Still, though, it will be great to have it back and all good. And how these things are handled may well be what defines the ownership experience for the next generation.

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