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Reported from Autonews (subscription required to read entire article)


Quality campaign

Quality issues have dogged Subaru since late 2017.

The problems emerged when the company disclosed that uncertified workers had for decades carried out tests of new cars for the domestic market.

The scandal deepened when Subaru also admitted that its final inspectors had faked fuel-economy and emissions data in some cases. Recalls to address cheating on the final inspections, combined with a spate of callbacks for various other glitches, spiraled into the hundreds of thousands of vehicles.

Nakamura returned to Japan to take over as president of the parent company in 2018 after being CEO of Subaru of America, and he immediately began tackling the problems.

"I was beginning to worry about the issue of quality shortly before I moved back to Japan. We were having more recalls," he said during a media roundtable in December. "I laid out quality improvement in the STEP midterm plan not because of the final-inspection issue, but because I had already been concerned about that, even when I was in the U.S.," he said.

"I thought this would be the biggest hindrance to our U.S. sales growth."

The company said it would spend more than $1 billion over five years to improve quality. The fix partly called for slowing production and implementing new quality measures and training procedures. Subaru also will set up a so-called "quality assurance laboratory" in Japan to redouble its efforts on matters such as testing, diagnostics and troubleshooting.

Last month, Subaru issued ¥40 billion ($365.2 million) in corporate bonds to help ease pressure on its cash reserves as it steps up outlays for quality expenses.

"We made quality reform our most important activity," Nakamura said. "All that contributes to improving the quality of the vehicles we are developing right now."
 

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So basically saying "ha ha, hey look at us, we made over a billion dollars selling inferior products"
 

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So basically saying "ha ha, hey look at us, we made over a billion dollars selling inferior products"
At least they seem like they are finally serious about quality control and are taking action. It just confirms what most of us Subaru owners have known for sometime now. Waaaay too many recalls and significant repair issues recently.
 

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I thought that the quality issues were for Japanese made cars?
It's for both markets.

Improving the public perception of its vehicle quality is at the forefront of the brand's efforts in the U.S., its largest market, and Japan.

"We're not used to the level of recalls that we've had," Subaru of America CEO Tom Doll said in an interview just before the release last week of this year's IQS results. "We're working with Subaru Corp. and they're working with everybody — their suppliers, the engineering staff and so forth.

 

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Brucey
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It's for both markets.

Improving the public perception of its vehicle quality is at the forefront of the brand's efforts in the U.S., its largest market, and Japan.

"We're not used to the level of recalls that we've had," Subaru of America CEO Tom Doll said in an interview just before the release last week of this year's IQS results. "We're working with Subaru Corp. and they're working with everybody — their suppliers, the engineering staff and so forth.

I could have sworn I read that:

"
The problems emerged when the company disclosed that uncertified workers had for decades carried out tests of new cars for the domestic market.

The scandal deepened when Subaru also admitted that its final inspectors had faked fuel-economy and emissions data in some cases. Recalls to address cheating on the final inspections, combined with a spate of callbacks for various other glitches, spiraled into the hundreds of thousands of vehicles.
"

This
specifically was for Japanese made cars that never saw US.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I could have sworn I read that:

"
The problems emerged when the company disclosed that uncertified workers had for decades carried out tests of new cars for the domestic market.

The scandal deepened when Subaru also admitted that its final inspectors had faked fuel-economy and emissions data in some cases. Recalls to address cheating on the final inspections, combined with a spate of callbacks for various other glitches, spiraled into the hundreds of thousands of vehicles.
"

This
specifically was for Japanese made cars that never saw US.
Yes, the fuel scandal was exclusive to Japan and did not impact any US vehicles. But he acknowledged and is concerned about the increase in the amount of recalls and quality issues in the US market as well as the continued fall in JD Quality studies (Subaru scores near the bottom now).
 

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I’m not sure, and I don’t think there is any way to ever know for sure, if specific inspections were short-changed on cars made for the US market in Japan (Crosstrek, WRX's, Forester, BRZ/86, plus the drivetrains for the cars assembled in Indiana). But IMO Subaru has some quality issues to get ironed out.

Management is quite correct in being concerned, since when a company gets caught in cheating anywhere, it doesn’t give customers confidence to buy.

 

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this is what happens when you are at capacity...you start taking shortcuts, and no I am not buying what the Subaru dude said not being at capacity. Since around 2014 they have been pretty much at the limit. Subaru is no longer a niche player...and they need to get their ducks in a row.

as for initial quality, take those things with a HUIUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGE grain of salt. How many older American cars do you see running around vs imports? People will complain about anything. I routinely get to drive new Subaru's and they for the most part have been very good.
 

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this is what happens when you are at capacity...you start taking shortcuts, and no I am not buying what the Subaru dude said not being at capacity. Since around 2014 they have been pretty much at the limit. Subaru is no longer a niche player...and they need to get their ducks in a row.
So what makes you more knowledgeable about Subaru's capacity than the CEO?
 

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^ because all you have to do is look at their production levels, they are not able to meet current demand. They stated that their production capacity is roughly 1 million cars. Given their current issues with quality, I am sure they are not going to meet that expectation while maintaining quality.

how many plants do they have again? math don't lie they have only 4 car assembly plants and the three in Japan accounts for 75% of their international sales (including those sent here to the USA)


so yeah time to take that huge grain of salt with that guy saying they are not maxed out.
 

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The math is pretty simple. In 2017 Subaru claimed capacity to be just over a million vehicles.

As of November 2019, 2019 global production was right around 900k vehicles, down 4% from the same period in 2018.

They are not at max production.
 

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uh, take a step back and look at the big picture, their quality control is down so yeah, I know it is hard for you accept it but, yes they are at capacity. theoretical capacity and actual capacity are two entirely different things.
 

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Brucey
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The math is pretty simple. In 2017 Subaru claimed capacity to be just over a million vehicles.

As of November 2019, 2019 global production was right around 900k vehicles, down 4% from the same period in 2018.

They are not at max production.
Yah even adding in an extra month (8.3%) of units they're under (975k) their own capacity unless total capacity shrunk.
 

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uh, take a step back and look at the big picture, their quality control is down so yeah, I know it is hard for you accept it but, yes they are at capacity. theoretical capacity and actual capacity are two entirely different things.
I agree their quality is down but just think how bad it would be if they really were at capacity?
 
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