Subaru has a real problem on its hands. They just issued a recall involving 50,000 vehicles across North America. Unfortunately for Subaru the media has chosen a moniker for their problem which just begs for mocking: ‘zombie cars.’
Specifically, the issue involves more than 45,000 Outback, Impreza and Legacy cars built between 2010 and 2013 along with all the Subaru Crosstrek vehicles built in 2013. An electrical problem is causing these vehicles to start automatically without the driver doing anything. Apparently it is caused by the remote starter embedded in the key fob. If that key fob is dropped or bumped it may start sending a signal randomly to start the vehicle’s motor.
Hence the term, ‘zombie car.’
This latest recall is less than a tenth the number of cars recalled by Subaru in January when they had to recall more than 625,000 vehicles due to a risk of fire. Although this latest recall pales in comparison when it comes to the number of cars, it is slightly more exciting because of the catchy name.
And admit it, a car which starts itself at random is slightly spooky, and spooky is popular. We wouldn’t be surprised if rather than getting a black-eye because of this ‘zombie car’ debacle Subaru actually started selling more cars. People might start lining up for a chance to own a ‘zombie car’ just so they can brag to their friends that their vehicle is perhaps ‘haunted.’
Subaru has told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that at least two minor injuries and a few property damage accidents have occurred as a result of these ‘zombie cars’, but again, we think that might just raise their ‘hipness’ factor with consumers looking for a reason to be excited by driving like they were when seat belts were optional and out-running the police was just a dirt road or cornfield away.