Originally Posted by AshJWilliams
I didn't mean psychologically. I mean that if you drove it and it felt amiss there are probably very real problems with your vehicle (especially considering that your dealership botched an engine install so badly that it self destructed immediately upon start-up).
Since last December I have had a spun rod bearing cause catastrophic engine failure requiring long block replacement. Ever since then I have noticed an occasional severe hesitation during acceleration, which persists to the present day (as well as a few other abnormalities probably all a result of the factory ECU tune). I have driven for 2 months with intermittent CEL's requiring 4 different trips to my local dealer to presumably resolve (one trip to diagnose, one completely unsuccessful, one to replace secondary air injection valve, one to conduct service on wiring harness/relay/fuses related to secondary air injection valve system). I have made 2 trips to my local dealer for service relating to what I believed to be use or loss of engine coolant; service adviser hypothesized that engine coolant was lost due to specific service procedure conducted and engine coolant level was not restored at the conclusion of service. Upon receiving my vehicle back from the secondary air injection valve replacement service the vehicle was returned to me with an apparent boost leak (or other abnormal high frequency noise from engine bay after turbo spool up), a damaged intercooler, and literally 7 other different pieces of equipment that were not installed properly (not clear to me if defects originated from factory and had not been observed or otherwise originated from dealer service). Bolts were literally missing, fasteners were not fastened, etc.
At that point I documented (including pictures) all of my problems and contacted SOA. Vehicle was returned to dealer for service. Dealer resolved a few of the existing issues but I still have a damaged intercooler, I still have an apparent boost leak (or other abnormal high frequency noise from engine bay after turbo spool up; I've also confirmed this abnormality by driving another 09 WRX Sedan since), and believe it or not (even though I provided pictures demonstrating exactly what defects existed in regard to improperly installed equipment) not all equipment was installed properly!
It's become obvious that my local dealer will be unable to remedy my problems but I'm not sure any other dealers will want to deal with them either. And regardless of that I have developed extremely valid concerns about the reliability and longevity of this vehicle. I have attempted to remain cordial while trying to work with SOA to assist in putting me in another 09 WRX or other Subaru but I'm beginning to feel like they've recently developed a policy of ignoring me. I honestly have no idea how to proceed at this point and I am beginning to feel like my only option is to lawyer up.
Thus the comment "if your experience was similar to mine your vehicle will never be the same again."
We have had multiple problems with our WRX including the remote entry and stereo keys not responding intermittenly (as well as total engine and turbo failure). We have broached the subject with Subaru of America - the rep I spoke with was actually pretty rude and unsympathetic. In fact I had sent in an email detailing all of the issues to them and when she called me to respond, she had not even read my email in full! Anyway, they did contact our dealer who has been helpful and seemingly sincerely wanting to fix the problem. They are trying to work up a deal to replace the vehicle with no cost to us and we are supposed to hear back in a day or two; I will let you know the results.
If you are in California, contact a lemon law attorney. I found one who works for no cost to the customer - they bill the company for their time, and they have a lot of resources to assist you! If Subaru doesn't help us get another car we're going to hire him to help us put together a demand to let us return the car, and if they refuse, you can at least typically get a decent settlement from Subaru which will offset the trade in value if you decide to get another car.