Subaru Forester Recall: Risk of Uncontrolled Acceleration Due to Floor Mats

Reports of floor mats curling when exposed to heat has resulted in a recall for an estimated 10,137 Subaru Forester vehicles, due to concerns that the mats could interfere with the driver’s clutch, brake, and accelerator pedals and potentially cause an auto accident.  

The 2014 Subaru Forester recall was announced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on April 24, following an investigation that found the floor mats were not manufactured correctly.

On April 1, 2013, an investigation was initiated after 21 Subaru Forester vehicles were found to have curling floor mats in Vancouver Washington, leading to a confirmation that the resin composition used for the mats was not to specification and may cause them to curl under exposure to heat.

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The recall includes 2014 Subaru Forester floor mats manufactured from January 2013 through March 2013. The mats were placed in vehicles sold on or before April 22, 2013 and shipped to dealers on or before April 12. The mats have a part number of J501SSG300. Dealers have been instructed to remove the mats and quarantine them to ensure they are not used in another vehicle.

Subaru released a statement saying the company will have notified all owners and dealers by the end of April 2013 and will replace all four of the floor mats free of charge. Customers can contact Subaru by calling 1-800-782-2783. For consumers with recalled vehicles, the recall campaign number is WQH-44. Consumers may also contact the NHTSA at 1-888-327-4236 or visit them online at www.safecar.gov for further recall information.

Similar to Toyota Unintended Acceleration Problems

The Subaru floor mat problem is similar to issues with unintended acceleration of Toyota and Lexus vehicles, which resulted in a recall for millions of cars two years ago and was linked a number serious and sometimes fatal accidents when of drivers were unable to slow or stop their car. Toyota initially blamed the problem on floor mats that were too thick and got jammed under the brake pedal.

The recalls started after a high-profile accident that killed a California state trooper and three family members after a Lexus vehicle reached speeds up to 120 m.p.h. Before the vehicle ultimately crashed, witnesses said that the vehicle’s wheels burst into flames as the driver was seen standing on the brake in an attempt to stop the vehicle.

Toyota was fined $32.4 million by the Department of Transportation in 2011, after an investigation showed Toyota stalled on the recalls and failed to notify federal safety officials about the problems in a timely manner.

As a result of the problems, Toyota has agreed to pay $1.4 billion to settle lawsuits over unintended acceleration.

Photo Courtesy of kappadueinnovazione via Flickr CC2.0

2 Comments

  • MariaDecember 3, 2017 at 6:53 am

    Just a few days ago, my 2010 Suburu Forrester started accelerating out of nowhere beyond my control, and when I tried to stop the car with my brakes, they would not work. I could not steer away into the street either. It was as if my car suddenly became possessed! As a result, I, too, crashed and totalled my car. In my case too, the floor mat was NOT the problem. The CAR was the problem. No one n[Show More]Just a few days ago, my 2010 Suburu Forrester started accelerating out of nowhere beyond my control, and when I tried to stop the car with my brakes, they would not work. I could not steer away into the street either. It was as if my car suddenly became possessed! As a result, I, too, crashed and totalled my car. In my case too, the floor mat was NOT the problem. The CAR was the problem. No one nor the dealership where I bought it from in PA ever notified me of this problem, either.

  • SuzanneNovember 18, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    My 2010 Subaru Forrester just crashed after sudden acceleration when I was backing into a parking space. The floor mat was NOT the problem. The CAR was the problem. No one, not Toyota or my dealership ever notified me of this problem. I now have a car I am TERRIFIED to drive.

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