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2020 Touring XT Crystal Black Silica
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301 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got off the phone with SoA. I have been having issues with my 2020 Touring XT rebooting. 4 trips to the dealer, 4 weeks in the shop (still there since May 21) and nothing has ever been done because they can't replicate it or find any codes.

I sent SoA a Lemon Law letter on May 21 and just got my first contact from them in response to that letter.

For what it is worth, I wrote down this direct quote: "We do know that there is an issue with some of these head units."

I asked her to clarify and she said she was referring to the issue of the head unit turning black and rebooting while driving. She said they don't know what is causing it and not all units are experiencing it.

Stay tuned.
 

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2021 Outback Limited (Mag Gray)
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5 Posts
My 2021 OB Limited (purchased in April) rebooted 2x in close succession this past weekend towards the end of a 5+ hour drive. However, on the way back it didn't occur and it was the first time it happened in the ~1700 miles I've put on it. Interested to see how this shakes out for you.
 

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2020 Touring XT Crystal Black Silica
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301 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My 2021 OB Limited (purchased in April) rebooted 2x in close succession this past weekend towards the end of a 5+ hour drive. However, on the way back it didn't occur and it was the first time it happened in the ~1700 miles I've put on it. Interested to see how this shakes out for you.
You are describing almost to a T how my issue surfaced. It was 5-6 hours into a longish drive. Mine rebooted 3 times in quick succession. It has been intermittent since then. Hope your issue was a one time occurrence.
 

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2021 Outback Limited (Mag Gray)
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5 Posts
You are describing almost to a T how my issue surfaced. It was 5-6 hours into a longish drive. Mine rebooted 3 times in quick succession. It has been intermittent since then. Hope your issue was a one time occurrence.
Yeah, I am hoping it was a 1x thing but based on some of the posts I've read on here, it seems like it is a bigger problem across OBs. I have some longer road trips these next 2 weekends so I'll see if it happens again.
 

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6 Posts
I've got 25,000 miles on my 2020 Outback Premium. I have seen the reboot happen around 8-10 times with a couple requiring turning the car off to get the unit back. This unit is heads and tails above the unit in our last car (a Ford), but it is still odd. Really a pain to have the unit reboot when using maps in a busy city.
 

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2021 Outback 2.4T Touring XT
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37 Posts
Thanks for this information.

We had this happening to my '21 Outback that we had for about 5 months. It worked fine for the first couple of months, and then the problems started building until the screen started crashing multiple times per ride. The dealer had it a week, and it took four days of them arguing with Subaru on my behalf to replace the cockpit control unit. Subaru wanted them to release the vehicle to me because the problem was intermittent. With the help of a customer advocate SOA approved and replaced it. Worked fine for about an month, and the problem is surfacing again. Stay tuned.
 

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I am very happy you posted this. My 2020 Touring XT has been experiencing this same issue since months after purchase. Each time, I am gaslighted and told the issue does not exist, but I always require either (1) a system update or (2) new USB to lightning cable or (3) both.

On Memorial Day, my head unit rebooted itself THREE times in less than 5 minutes. I took video of each incident and immediately called SoA the next morning to demand resolution. The representative I spoke to did not acknowledge this as a known issue but informed me a customer resolution specialist will be reaching out to me after my dealer visit on Friday. I will definitely be referencing this post (with your permission).

While I love the car, the fact that these issues are pervasive and annoying — occurring on both small trips to the gas station and longer day drives to the northern part of the state — detract from my overall enjoyment of the car and the Subaru brand. Having been loyal to it now for almost half a decade, if it cannot be resolved, this will be my last Subaru.
 

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2020 Subaru Outback Touring XT Autumn Green
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474 Posts
We have had our 2020 OB Touring XT since it was custom built Oct 2019. Starting two weeks after we got it and continuing to this day we have sporadic reboot and/or failure of the head unit to function. The first time it happened following all the troubleshooting steps left me with no choice but to remove the negative cable from the battery, wait 5 mins and reconnect. That causes the head unit to reboot from scratch. Ever since then I've been able to sometimes successfully restart from the volume knob sometimes not. Sometimes have to stop the car and let it sit. And rarer having to remove the negative battery cable. It is, unfortunately, one of the worst parts of the vehicle. And it costs time because I need to find a place to pull over so I can tinker with the car. Needless to say I keep a 10mm wrench in the driver's seat pouch in back for this specific purpose of rebooting the head unit. It is just quicker for me to fix it that way than spend 15 mins going through all the troubleshooting steps especially in the cold or rain. Unfortunately, for my wife this is going to be problematic once she starts driving again. So I'm hoping Subaru comes up with a fix before then. Otherwise we'll be looking for a new car for her and it likely will not be a Subaru (maybe go back to Volvo). shrug
 

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Premium Member
2020 Onyx
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10,448 Posts
My early production (August 2019) Outback has never had a head unit reboot, but my trips are never more than 40 miles at a time.

I post these documents (a few months old) because some might find it helpful just to know what Subaru's official process is, in deciding whether or not to replace a Cockpit Control Unit - Subaru doesn't own and operate dealership service departments so these procedures might not be followed exactly.
 

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2020 Touring XT Crystal Black Silica
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301 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
My early production (August 2019) Outback has never had a head unit reboot, but my trips are never more than 40 miles at a time.

I post these documents (a few months old) because some might find it helpful just to know what Subaru's official process is, in deciding whether or not to replace a Cockpit Control Unit - Subaru doesn't own and operate dealership service departments so these procedures might not be followed exactly.
Thanks. I gave these to the dealer the first time and they just gave me a blank stare.

Today, SoA said they can't even go through the fault tree (these documents, I think) without a code. I don't know whether the units have codes for unknown faults/problems or whether those codes survive rebooting.
 

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2020 Touring XT Crystal Black Silica
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301 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I am very happy you posted this. My 2020 Touring XT has been experiencing this same issue since months after purchase. Each time, I am gaslighted and told the issue does not exist, but I always require either (1) a system update or (2) new USB to lightning cable or (3) both.

On Memorial Day, my head unit rebooted itself THREE times in less than 5 minutes. I took video of each incident and immediately called SoA the next morning to demand resolution. The representative I spoke to did not acknowledge this as a known issue but informed me a customer resolution specialist will be reaching out to me after my dealer visit on Friday. I will definitely be referencing this post (with your permission).

While I love the car, the fact that these issues are pervasive and annoying — occurring on both small trips to the gas station and longer day drives to the northern part of the state — detract from my overall enjoyment of the car and the Subaru brand. Having been loyal to it now for almost half a decade, if it cannot be resolved, this will be my last Subaru.
You are welcome to reference my post for whatever good it will do. The SoA rep I spoke to said they don't read the forums and that while some customers had real issues with head units, others just complained about their phones not connecting. That's when I asked her what the issue was and she referenced rebooting.

So, I think SoA has left itself some wiggle room to ignore us when they want to. I still don't know what the resolution will be with my vehicle. The "no code, no problem" mantra is strong with SoA. They said they couldn't even trouble shoot the problem without a code. I have to wonder whether codes exist for unknown faults/problems and whether any codes survive rebooting.
 

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2020 Onyx
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10,448 Posts
How could you, unless you drive in circles around the island!?!? :D
Yep - I read with great interest the adventures of you guys who can traverse the country to get to wonderful places - so inspiring! Still love my subie and island life, but there's so much more world out there that it would be nice to road trip. Glad we're all a part of the community even if we're landlocked on an island.
 

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2016 2.5i Premium / 2020 2.5i Premium / 2021 Rav4 Prime / 2012 F150 ecoboost
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2,669 Posts
Yep - I read with great interest the adventures of you guys who can traverse the country to get to wonderful places - so inspiring! Still love my subie and island life, but there's so much more world out there that it would be nice to road trip. Glad we're all a part of the community even if we're landlocked on an island.
I love Hawaii. Wouldn't mind to live there. Beautiful place!!! 👍🏻
 

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2014 Forester -> 2021 Onyx XT
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1 Posts
Good to hear that some acknowledgement might be seeping from the cracks at SOA. My 2021 Onyx has about 6K and this hard reboot happens about every couple of weeks, though never have seen the 3 times in a row.
 

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2020 Outback Onyx XT
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35 Posts
I too have experienced the Infotainment reboot in my 2020 Onyx XT several times over past year. For me, it only occurs on longish trips when two iPhones are plugged into the front USB ports and I'm using Apple Maps with CarPlay on one of the phones. I've never had it reboot when driving around town. This past Memorial Day weekend it happened 4 times during a 1.5 hour trip driving to our destination. On the trip back home 3 days later it didn't reboot a single time. Go figure. There doesn't seem to be an identifiable pattern to this reboot behavior other than longer duration drives with Apple CarPlay. One of the times the CID reported EyeSight was no longer available too. After the reboot(s), everything returned to the previous state including my Apple map navigation with CarPlay and EyeSight. Following a reboot I can no longer toggle Auto Vehicle Hold (AVH) back on until I power cycle the car. Everything else operates normally, until the next reboot. I took the car to my dealer today (second time it's been in for this problem) plus mentioned that since the last SW update/recall the Infotainment system after car start is very sluggish to input gestures for about first 2 minutes. As I expected they couldn't find any error codes and of course couldn't replicate the problem. They confirmed I had latest SW but went ahead and refreshed the SW to be sure there wasn't a bad load last time. I did feel the response to my inputs after starting the car felt more responsive compared to previous. Maybe if enough people bring this to their dealer service and SOA, Subaru might consider dropping a SW update that provides an option of extensive logging to trap these unpredictable/non-repeatable reboot events to help narrow the cause. I get it, if service can't replicate the issue and no meaningful error codes are being logged it's very difficult to diagnose the problem.
 

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2020 Onyx
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10,448 Posts
Some months ago it was reported in Motor Trend that Subaru is working on more updates for the Gen 6 head unit and by now I'm sure they're well aware of the rebooting issue despite them acting oblivious at times. Fingers crossed that it's a software and not a hardware issue.
 

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2020 Outback Onyx XT
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35 Posts
You are welcome to reference my post for whatever good it will do. The SoA rep I spoke to said they don't read the forums and that while some customers had real issues with head units, others just complained about their phones not connecting. That's when I asked her what the issue was and she referenced rebooting.

So, I think SoA has left itself some wiggle room to ignore us when they want to. I still don't know what the resolution will be with my vehicle. The "no code, no problem" mantra is strong with SoA. They said they couldn't even trouble shoot the problem without a code. I have to wonder whether codes exist for unknown faults/problems and whether any codes survive rebooting.
Subaru could drop a version of the SW that keeps a crash log just like Operating Systems do. The crash log would capture the commands executing just prior to the crash/reboot and a memory dump. It would need to be something that has to be enabled as needed and not always on as it would be a processing overhead for the system to log constantly.
 

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I am very happy you posted this. My 2020 Touring XT has been experiencing this same issue since months after purchase. Each time, I am gaslighted and told the issue does not exist, but I always require either (1) a system update or (2) new USB to lightning cable or (3) both.

On Memorial Day, my head unit rebooted itself THREE times in less than 5 minutes. I took video of each incident and immediately called SoA the next morning to demand resolution. The representative I spoke to did not acknowledge this as a known issue but informed me a customer resolution specialist will be reaching out to me after my dealer visit on Friday. I will definitely be referencing this post (with your permission).

While I love the car, the fact that these issues are pervasive and annoying — occurring on both small trips to the gas station and longer day drives to the northern part of the state — detract from my overall enjoyment of the car and the Subaru brand. Having been loyal to it now for almost half a decade, if it cannot be resolved, this will be my last Subaru.
The dealer is making you question your sanity and/or memory? Do you find yourself dependent on your service advisor for emotional support and validation? 😉
 

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Maybe keeping record of everyone here who has and hasn't had an issue along with some relevant data about their vehicle (Model year, Trim level, HK or standard audio, Head Unit software level, VIN, manufacturing date, mileage, rough estimate of frequency) could help narrow down what is going on.

For the record, I have a 2021 OB Onyx without HK, at 950 miles and I haven't had any issues with rebooting (knock on wood).
 
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