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2018 Outback 3.6R Touring
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I received the email notifying me that my Outback's monthly vehicle health report was available, and, like always, I clicked on the link. It sent me to the correct page, but I got an error message saying I couldn't access the reports because I was not subscribed to Starlink. I knew that was wrong, but I double-checked and in fact, my Starlink subscription is active through June of 2022 (there have been no lapses in coverage since I purchased the vehicle in 2018.)

So I attempted to send an email to Subaru to ask about the issue (since I hate wading through menus on the phone)--but that didn't work. Something is wrong with their website (well actually SEVERAL things) and although I got a brief onscreen flash that the message went through, the next screen had some error message. So I gave up and called the Starlink number.

The person I spoke to checked my account and assured me that my subscription was very much active but said she couldn't resolve the problem since it had to do with Subaru's website, and not Starlink. So she told me she would transfer me to the correct department. Instead, the call was disconnected. (Of course she never gave me the number she was transferring me to, and although she insisted on verifying MY number, she did not attempt to call me back.)

Next, I called the Subaru general number, and after wading through several "trees," I got to a human. He said HE couldn't help but would transfer me to the correct department. This time I asked him for the direct number, but he said it was for internal use only. So much for that. Anyway, then I got to a human in the correct department, who stopped me before I could even finish describing my issue to tell me that they were aware of the problem and had been trying to fix it. He said they'd gotten hundreds of calls on the same problem. Really? But then not one of the other people I spoked to knew anything about it? And why not send out an email to people telling them that there's a problem? He thought that was a good suggestion, but of course nothing has come of it. And I'm sure they'll never come out with an email advising us that the problem has been resolved-- so do we just go in and keep clicking to see if it's finally working?


Frankly, I just fed up with this kind of inefficiency and lack of customer service. It's always amazing to me how corporations will spend millions in advertising and promotion to get new customers, but can't be bothered to treat their existing customers well. They wasted both my time and their employees' time for no good reason. I know this experience will factor into my decision about ever purchasing another Subaru.
 

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I suspect the customer service was just using the online equivalent of of the old, "Not a problem, they all do that." that service advisors at many brands and dealers have used for years.

Actually, given the amount of spam, robo-calls, etc. that started 30 days after I bought my 2021 Subaru Outback, I would never click on any link about subscriptions or warranties. All will say X or Y about my new Subaru, but are always unable to tell me the year or model. Lately it has been physical mail saying I need to 'activate" my Manufacturer New Car Warranty on my Subaru.

This type of stuff really started with my old Hyundai Santa Fe, when they began sending unsolicited 'free' CarFax reports about 5 years after I bought it. I suspect either CarFax, individual Dealers (or dealer chains), or Manufacturers (or any other subscription service like SiriusXM) are sharing your data to further monetize their businesses. It could also be if your state is an open record state, vendors are getting a data scrape of new car purchases.

Be careful out there. If something is free, usually it is your personal data that pays...
 

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2018 Outback 3.6R Touring
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31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for your response. The email in question was definitely from Subaru; I get it every month to alert me that my monthly vehicle health reports are available. So I don't think it was a spam or unauthorized access situation.

But to update things -- more than a week after I sent the original email to Subaru about the issue (which was before I played the phone game), I finally got a response: "Thank you for contacting Subaru of America Inc. Starlink Customer Care is in the best position to assist with billing and subscription concerns. They can be reached at 855-753-
2495."

Talk about useless information. This definitely sealed the deal -- never again Subaru.
 

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'17 OB 3.6R Touring [ex-'09 OB Ltd. (2009-16); ex-'01 Audi A6 Avant (2001-2009)]; '14 Impreza Sport Premium
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Welcome to modern “customer service“ generally. :(
 

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2019 OUTBACK 2.5 TOURING
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180 Posts
Thanks for your response. The email in question was definitely from Subaru; I get it every month to alert me that my monthly vehicle health reports are available. So I don't think it was a spam or unauthorized access situation.

But to update things -- more than a week after I sent the original email to Subaru about the issue (which was before I played the phone game), I finally got a response: "Thank you for contacting Subaru of America Inc. Starlink Customer Care is in the best position to assist with billing and subscription concerns. They can be reached at 855-753-
2495."

Talk about useless information. This definitely sealed the deal -- never again Subaru.
Do you really think any of the other manufacturers are without fault? I have several vehicles, most often from prestige makers, and they all have their problems as well.
 

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2022 Outback Wilderness with moonroof package
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. . . . This definitely sealed the deal -- never again Subaru.
I get your frustration and anger at this kind of non-service . . . there's probably not one of us on the forum who hasn't experienced it one way or another because it's rampant in corporate America. My question is, suppose you never buy a Subaru again. How does SoA know the reason? How do you tie the two together -- terrible customer service and switching brands -- so it actually has an effect? I'm not being snarky about this, I just don't know how we as consumers can affect the corporate level. It's frustrating and somewhat depressing.
 
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