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Old 01-08-2002, 11:23 AM   #1
jerlebird
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Question No warranty on factory upgrades?!

Hello all,

Just last weekend I took a stroll by a local Subie dealership and was ogling some of the WRX sedans and wagons they had on he lot. After talking with one of the sales droids for a little while, I expressed interest in upgrading the suspension, shifter, and exhaust (with Subaru factory "performance parts, mind you!) and was then told in no uncertain terms that there would be NO warranty associated with any parts I decided to upgrade... HUH?!

I didn't check with the Service Manager or anybody else at that particular dealership, but I fail to understand how UPGRADING a part, purchased and installed by the dealer would then come with NO warranty (essentially voiding your warranty for that particular part).

Has anyone else heard of this? I find this very disconcerting, since I was under the impression that SOA had a more moederate attitude towards owners that enjoyed modding their WRX's... and in this case, with factory parts! I am coming from a VW environment, and one of the main things that has eventually turned me off about Veedubs is the poor after-market support for upgrades and ZERO dealer support. VWOA will fight tooth and nail to avoid handling warranty issues. I thought that would not be the case with SOA.

Thoughts? Comments?

Thanks!

-Jason
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Old 01-08-2002, 12:04 PM   #2
Julian
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The lack of a factory warranty on, essentially, aftermarket parts has been well documented and understood. Subaru's suspension and shifter upgrades (et al.) have never come with a warranty. I know of no manufacturer who warranties such parts.
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Old 01-08-2002, 12:09 PM   #3
jerlebird
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Well documented and understood by most everyone but me, it seems. Then again, it doesn't say "Scooby Newbie" next to my name for nothing, eh?

Anyway, thanks for the confirmation.

-Jason
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Old 01-08-2002, 12:29 PM   #4
psoper
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Default No mfg warranty's "sport suspensions"?

Let's see, how about,
Ford,
GM,
BMW,
Audi,
VW,
I could go on but.....c'mon, folks- just about every other manufacturer on the friggin' planet offers so called "sport" suspension upgrades as "factory warranty covered" options.

Hell BMW even covers some of Steve Dinans workovers, which go pretty far beyond shocks springs and sway bars.

The exhaust thing I can see if it isn't compliant with noise or emissions regs.

But a short shifter? I mean seriously! this is sillyness!

I still contend Subaru is missing the boat on this one.
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Old 01-08-2002, 12:57 PM   #5
jerlebird
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AHA!

So my previous assertion was *not* entirely crazy... I just can't fathom how simply buying a *different* part from the DEALER would come with NO warranty. I wasn't asking whether or not upgrading a given part voids the overall vehicle warranty, but the actual PART that you purchased.

So where do they draw the line? Because the frickin car doesn't come with an armrest extension, if I want to add that on its considered an "aftermarlet purchase" and therefore has no warranty? Or If I choose to go with their "Premium soundsystem", I lose any kind of warranty on the stupid stereo?!

Ridiculous.

-Jason
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Old 01-08-2002, 02:38 PM   #6
Madrallyskillz
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It is covered by your factory warrenty as long as it is installed on the car when you take delivery of the car. Just don't sign an adjusted warrenty notice when you do take delivery.
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Old 01-08-2002, 03:09 PM   #7
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The problem is that the warranty is through SOA and the SPT/STi parts aren't SOA stuff, so they don't have to cover them. But I still think it's silly.
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Old 01-08-2002, 04:44 PM   #8
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Never said it wasn't silly, just said they don't cover it.

And VW doesn't have a "sport" suspension worth of the name. Any STi/SPT, NISMO, SVT/Ford Racing, etc. part is not covered and comes with no warranty of its own.
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Old 01-08-2002, 08:09 PM   #9
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Default SVT, VW and so on.....

Well, you can order a Focus "SVT" and it will come from the Ford factory with "SVT tuned" suspension and it is fully covered by the factory warranty.

I don't know much about VWs, despite co-driving one on the CRS rally circuit, but I don't think a GTi's suspension is excluded from the same warranty coverage you get on a base TDi golf, despite higher spring rates, fatter sway bars and re-tuned dampers.

Likewise with BMW and Audi, pay the money for a sport-tuned suspension and you get it -WITH FACTORY WARRANTY COVERAGE.

Sadly, you cannot order a WRX with STi suspension, despite it appearing in their "optional equipment and accessories" flyer.

As much as I love my WRX, I think Subaru is blowing it on this topic.

Maybe an STi model or even option package will come from the factory in the future, but for now, that is the way it is, and IMHO -it sucks.
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Old 01-08-2002, 10:28 PM   #10
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Do a search, for cryin out loud.

Only items installed by the Subaru factory or port are covered by the factory warranty. (The word "factory" is a clue there.)

Accessories are covered by the accessory warranty. So if you put an armrest extension on yourself, or floor mats, or whatever, then it is covered as an accessory.

The only accessories that don't carry any type of warranty coverage are the sports muffler and suspension kit.

The short shift kit DOES carry Subaru's accessory warranty, but not the factory warranty, unless it was installed by the port.

For more on the suspension kit and muffler warranty, read:
http://new-impreza.com/na/disclaimer.htm

And also prior threads:

http://www.i-club.com/forums/showthr...threadid=37873

http://www.i-club.com/forums/showthr...threadid=57638

Glenn
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Old 01-08-2002, 10:33 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Glenn Wallace
[b]
For more on the suspension kit and muffler warranty, read:
http://new-impreza.com/na/disclaimer.htm
Speaking of said site, are you EVER gonna update it? It's been like a year
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Old 01-09-2002, 02:09 AM   #12
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Only 10 months really.

I suck!
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Old 01-09-2002, 02:33 AM   #13
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SVT, AMG, M . . . All are in-house packages on specific models.

I'm not exactly sure of the relationship between FHI, Subaru, and STi. I know that there are STi models sold at regular dealerships, and they're probably covered by some sort of warranty. There are also Cobb tuned models sold at a dealership in Texas, and the Cobb parts aren't covered by the SOA warranty. Subaru and Prodrive have a close relationship, but the Prodrive parts aren't covered by SOA warranty by any means.

Stillen stuff is(?)/was available at some Nissan dealerships, but I doubt that they are covered. Wait until the Nismo starts showing up in dealer showrooms. Or check out what a TRD supercharger does for the warranty on a Tacoma V6.
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Old 01-09-2002, 12:48 PM   #14
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Default But the point is....?

For me I think it kind of boils down to presentation, the suspension and exahust are listed on the accesories flyer that includes most of the optional "package" accesories- with only little tiny asterisks pointing out that these are "racing" bits- only in a lot more obtuse verbage- "off highway use" is pretty ambiguous if you ask me.

SVT has a catalog of racing bits which are seperate from what you order as an SVT option package on Ford stuff.

Subaru should probably keep their STi performance parts segregated in this manner too.

Like others have pointed out, you pay the premium for an "S" or "M" badge, and we are all looking forward to getting a factory STi model in the states (like the rest of the world does...) but "sport" suspension options are not exclusive to those special models.

Not to come down on the stock WRX, but have you seen how WRX's fair in the slalom tests the car rags like to throw them at?-
getting spanked by MP3's and celicas, nothing to be real proud of...
the mere existence of the STi suspension "kit" indicates that they can do better, and they know it.

Subaru had (still has, for that matter) an opportunity to deliver a better handling car to its customers, and chooses not to, -their,
-and our loss.

But for my money, my little WRX wagon still kicks the crap out of a BMW 325iX wagon, thank you.
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Old 01-09-2002, 03:36 PM   #15
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One of the main gripes the car rags have about the WRX when doing slalom and cornering test is that the tires are not designed for that kind of use, so the numbers are all crappy.
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Old 01-09-2002, 03:56 PM   #16
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My dealer (well, the parts & service guy) went so far as to tell me that there were certain items from the Impreza accessories pamphlet thingy that they were not allowed to ->install<-! I forget which exactly, but I think it may have been the suspension kits, possibly the exhaust stuff. Now I can kinda-sorta understand not wanting to warranty this stuff (although it does suck), but not even willing to install stuff that is in their own sales literature? Goofy.

(This is the same guy who told me that my parking brake couldn't be adjusted, and that it wasn't supposed to be able to hold the car in place ((different dealership happily adjusted it for me)), so he might just be clueless)
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Old 01-09-2002, 10:05 PM   #17
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No most subie dealers will not install the suspension OR the exhaust. Me personally I'm buying leda coilovers when my car comes here in may. Scoobysport did a test and a stock wrx with a leda suspension did much better on a track than a sti. Power isn't everything. japanese performance magazine has the article on it.
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Old 01-10-2002, 02:03 AM   #18
CosmoTheCat
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Well if the stuff is sold for "off highway use only" and the dealer installed it, how bad would that be?

If for some stupid reason a person had the dealer install it, and they got in a wreck, they could claim ignorance on the non-street-legality of the stuff and say "but the dealer installed it!". I don't blame them at all.
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Old 01-10-2002, 06:42 AM   #19
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dude that's lame! u got the part from the dealer and they installed it, then they should cover it too...my 2 pennies!

ps...so if i got the gauge pod and gauges and had them install, then they wouldn't be covered if something happened to the pod and gauges, right? that is bull-crap!
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Old 01-10-2002, 06:50 AM   #20
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I think you missed the point. The guage pack is a SOA piece, not STi/SPT "off-highway" piece.
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Old 01-10-2002, 06:51 AM   #21
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Before I bought my WRX, I was going to have them put new exaust on it, but they couldn't do that and hold the warranty, even before I signed the papers, and took it off the lot. Now THAT is Bull-****.
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Old 01-10-2002, 09:04 AM   #22
jerlebird
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Unhappy

Sadly, all of this simply confirms my fears, and the general lame-ness of the situation. However, I take comfort in the fact that if I really want to upgrade the suspension and exhaust, I'll just do it totally aftermarket, resulting in better hardware and allowing me to keep my old parts.

Thanks for all the feedback!

-Jason
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Old 01-10-2002, 03:55 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by WRXGuyInTulsa
Before I bought my WRX, I was going to have them put new exaust on it, but they couldn't do that and hold the warranty, even before I signed the papers, and took it off the lot. Now THAT is Bull-****.
Again, you missed the point. The STi stuff comes with a disclaimer stating that it may not meet the same emissions standards as the stock stuff. (On a muffler, why does it matter? I don't know). It's their policy though. Buy at your own risk. But the warranty on the STi exhaust is NOT going to be covered by SOA. They are two different companies. You wouldn't expect Microsoft to cover the warranty on a Compaq computer, would you?
Another computer analogy- adding performance parts is like overclocking the processor.

We ALL know that most processors can handle a little overclocking, but if it fries and IBM finds out that it was run at twice the speed it was supposed to, you wouldn't honestly expect them to pay for a new chip, would you? Now would you honestly expect IBM to go ahead and flip the multiplier settings for you, before you bought the machine? I don't think so.

Aftermarket stuff is aftermarket stuff, no matter who makes it. Count it as a blessing if any aftermarket stuff is actually covered by the manufacturer.

Also count it as a blessing that you DIDN'T pay almost $900 for a stupid muffler. STi is not the best stuff out there. Sure, they work really closely with Subaru to design stuff, but come on. All of you people buying STi stuff are doing is buying OK stuff for outrageous prices, due to the name. Can't you see that?

I know, I'll probably be struck down and flamed by the STi gods. Whatever.
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Old 01-11-2002, 02:24 AM   #24
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Quote:
Sadly, all of this simply confirms my fears, and the general lame-ness of the situation. However, I take comfort in the fact that if I really want to upgrade the suspension and exhaust, I'll just do it totally aftermarket, resulting in better hardware and allowing me to keep my old parts.
Hello, McFly?!

If you buy the STi suspension kit, you get to keep your old parts.

Just like you get to keep your stock wheels/tires if you buy the BBS 17" wheels.

Half of the people here have either not read the information posted or just missed the point.

The STi kit is like most of the stuff in the Ford Motorsport catalog.

The fact Subaru brought it in, and sell it for (what I think) is a cheap price (e.g. $330 for a pair of aluminum control arms with STi bushes?!!) - we should all be happy.

If they'd not brought it in, everyone would whine that Subaru sucked because they didn't sell any upgrades.

Subaru had to make it "off highway use" to duck warranty, federal certification and a bunch of other issues. To offer it as a "factory" option would have greatly increased the price and required certification/testing.

Sure it is better than the stock suspension. I suspect most owners will be quite happy with the stock suspension - you have to remember the i-clubbers aren't totally representative of the 12,000 WRX owners - we're a bit more "hard core". (that's about cars, not porn).

Actually, SOA doesn't have any relationship with Prodrive on parts. To quote SOA "why would we sell Prodrive stuff when we can get the real deal, STi".

FHI is SOA's parent.

SOA has instructed dealers NOT to install the suspension or muffler. They are doing this to limit their liability, I assume. Fair move.

Glenn
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Old 01-11-2002, 09:51 AM   #25
jerlebird
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Thumbs down

Hello Glenn, McFly here...

No need to get all persnickety on me. My point remains this: I still don't like the fact that they are offering an upgrade from a factory part, then refusing to even install or warranty the part in order to, how did you put it? "duck warranty, federal certification and a bunch of other issues". Yes, I read all the fine print associated with it. I *understand* it can "only be lawfully installed by end user."

Those facts are still, in my estimation, LAME. And yes, that's *my* OPINION. Personally, I would not "whine" if they did not offer these parts, I would (and probably will) simply look elsewhere if I wanted performance upgrades.

Also, you're telling me that if I walk onto a car lot, ANY car lot and say "order me this vehicle with extra options A, B, and C", they're gonna ship that vehicle to me with all the "extra" stock parts I upgraded from sitting in the trunk?! Umm... SURE. I understand the difference between THAT scenario, and already having the car, then purchasing new parts. Of COURSE they're going to give you back your old parts in that situation (assuming you ask for them).

Please don't get me wrong though... I love the car, and I think that the standard options it comes with are pretty darn good. All things considered, I still say it's the most bang for the buck in that price range, hands down. It was just that "performance parts" policy they have that got me all in a huff.

My bottom line is that if you're gonna show me something as an option in a catalog FROM THE MANUFACTURER, it only stands to reason that you should install and stand behind that product.

Anyway, it's clear this thread has been thrashed to a pulp. I appreciate *everyone's* thoughts on the matter, even YOU Glenn! Drive safe, and please excuse my ignorance if it offended you...

-Jason
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