Subaru is recalling certain 2012 Legacy and 2012 Outback vehicles for problems with the side curtain airbags. According to the recall report filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) an incorrect propellant mixture for the initiator component could result in an insufficient output of compressed gas. The airbags may not deploy properly, increasing the risk of injury during an accident. The recall is expected to begin in April. Owners wanting more information about the problem can contact Subaru at 1-800-782-2783.

Subaru is recalling some 2012 Impreza sedans and wagons, 2012 Legacy and, 2012 Outback vehicles after customers complained about the increase in the amount of brake pedal travel. According to the recall report, these vehicles may have a master brake cylinder that could malfunction, leaving the driver to misjudge the amount of brake pedal required to slow or stop the vehicle. Subaru will inspect and replace any affected master brake cylinders free of charge. Owners wanting more information about the problem can contact Subaru at 1-800-782-2783.

Subaru is recalling some 2011 Outback and 2011 Legacy vehicles because the moonroof glass may become loose or detach from the vehicle. According to the recall report, the amount and position of the adhesive between the glass and retainer was inadequately applied, and could become a road hazard if it detaches while driving. Owners wanting more information on the recall can contact Subaru at 1-800-782-2783.

Webasto Group first announced this sun roof detachment issue in 2010, and it has been an ongoing problem effecting many makes and models of vehicles. If you think your vehicle may have a recalled moon roof, you can click here to verify if your sunroof is involved.

Subaru has announced a recall for certain 2011 Outback and 2011 Legacy vehicles for problems with the moonroof assembly. According to Subaru, the amount and position of the adhesive between the glass and retainer was inadequately applied and could lead to the glass to become loose or detached. Subaru dealers will inspect the moonroof and apply additional adhesive if necessary. Owners wanting more information can contact Subaru at 1-800-782-2783.

Consumer Reports (CR) is an American magazine published by Consumers Union since 1936. It publishes reviews and comparisons of consumer products and services based on reporting and results from its in-house testing laboratory. Consumer Reports does not print outside advertising, accept free product samples, or permit the commercial use of its reviews for selling products. Its publisher states that this policy allows the magazine to “maintain their independence and impartiality… so that CR has no agenda other than the interests of consumers.

Every year, CR publishes their top ten automobiles in ten different categories. The choices are based on performance, reliability and safety. Below are Consumers Reports picks for the 2010 year.

    Family Sedan

    Nissan Altima:

    The Nissan Altima has always been a popular choice as a family sedan. It’s roomy interior and comfortable ride makes the car an enjoyable drive. The 2010 version of this car offers improved looks, standard electronic stability control (ESC) and the best fuel economy in its class.

    Small Sedan

    Hyundai Elantra SE:

    Hyundai safety and reliability has come a long way and has made Consumer Reports top picks for the third time. The Elantra SE, offers a comfortable ride, good fuel economy and plenty of features for the price. The SE comes with standard ESC that is often not offered on similar competitors vehicles.

    Sporty Car

    Volkswagen GTI:

    The 2010 Volkswagen GTI is a sporty version of the Golf. It offers excellent handling and acceleration and is a comfortable car to drive. The interior is tastefully finished with plenty of cargo space, especially with the hatchback model. Like all Volkswagen’s, the GTI offers a respectable fuel economy.

    Small SUV

    Subaru Forester:

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    The Subaru Forester has been labeled as the SUV that offers the most car like driving experience. It offers a comfortable ride with plenty of room and excellent visibility. The Forester offers excellent reliability and an impressive gas mileage for an SUV.

    Best Overall Car

    Lexus LS 460L:

    Lexus has always pampered it’s customers with a luxurious driving experience. The LS 460L is no exception with it’s well crafted, roomy and quiet interior. Though the price is a bit higher than some of the vehicles in its class, if you can afford it, it is well worth it.

    Family SUV

    Chevrolet Traverse:

    Overall, the Traverse stands out as a family SUV. It is comfortable and responsive, and allows up to eight adults seated comfortably as well as room for cargo. Visibility is not the best for this SUV, taking into account the size of it, but Chevy offers convex side mirrors and an optional rear view camera to help.

    Sports Sedan

    Infiniti G37:

    The Infiniti G sedans are one of the highest rated sedans tested by Consumer Reports. Excellent handling, acceleration and comfort make this luxurious vehicle a pleasure to drive. Because it is a sports sedan, space and storage are compromised.

    Family Hauler

    Mazda5:

    The Mazda5 offers a lot in a compact and affordable microvan. It offers the convenience of a minivan with the maneuverability and fuel economy of a wagon. The addition of standard ESC for 2010 makes this minivan safer and fun to drive.

    Green Car

    Toyota Prius:

    The Toyota Prius was one to the first green cars manufactured for the public. Its overall mileage has made it the green car pick for the seventh straight year. It is a comfortable car to drive, and its 2010 redesign makes it even more appealing. Toyota has also added a dedicated EV that allows it to run longer on electric power at low speeds.

    Pickup Truck

    Chevrolet Silverado 1500:

    This well rounded pickup offers a roomy cabin, an exellent payload capacity and a decent ride for a pickup. It is an excellent 4WD family vehicle offering a quality interior on higher end models.

An oily substance on the windshields of Subaru vehicles is creating visibility problems for many Subaru drivers. The yellowish chemical haze has been reported as being so bad that driving the vehicle is made impossible especially in very bright or night time situations. Solutions offered by dealerships have been to clean the windshield, but the oily film is difficult to remove, and returns in a very short time.

Rumor is that there has been a technical service bulletin issued on the problem, but my searches have come up empty handed. Unofficially, the problem is being blamed on the material used in a rubber seal on the heater box. The material used is “off gassing” to excess causing the build up. The problem is expected to clear up after extended use, but some people with respiratory problems may experience health issues when breathing the fumes.

Below are some of the automobile recalls for June 2010

  • Access Options is recalling certain trucks and vans built on Ford E150, E350, Toyota Sienna, and Dodge Grand Caravan chassis and equipped with VMI/Ricon 6-way power seat bases. The seat base may have a defective weld on the pivot pin which could fail and injure the occupant. The manufacturer will replace the swivel plate free of charge if necessary. Owners may contact Access Option at 831-722-6804.
  • BMW is recalling 2008-2011 1-Series vehicles. In a crash that allows the front pre-tensioner and load limiter to deploy, the insulation around the pre-tensioner could ignite. The manufacturer is still working on a remedy for the problem. If owners would like more information, they can contact BMW at 1-800-525-7417.
  • Subaru is recalling certain 2010 Outback and Legacy passenger vehicles manufactured from February 16, 2009 through April 12, 2010. The wiring in the steering column electrical roll connector located behind the vehicle’s steering wheel may develop stress cracks and break resulting in certain electrical components not operating. Possible circuits affected are the driver’s frontal airbag, paddle shifter function, cruise control, horn control and radio functions. Dealers will check lot numbers of the steering roll connector and will replace it with a new one if the lot number showed any affected range of the failure occurrence. This service will be performed free of charge. Owners may contact Subaru at 1-800-782-2783.
  • Suzuki is recalling some 2006 grand Vitara’s and 2005-2006 XL-7 vehicles for the tension adjuster pulley that operates the power steering pump and air conditioner compressor. Repeated heat stress can cause the outer portion plastic materials to deteriorate and break off. Broken pieces of the pulley can get caught between the pulley and the drive belt, causing the drive belt to come off, making the vehicle difficult to steer. Dealers will replace the power steering pump drive belt tension adjuster pulley free of charge. Owners may contact Suzuki at 1-800-934-0934.
  • Volvo is recalling some 2010-2011 C30, 2010 S40 and V50 vehicles equipped with 6 speed manual transmissions. The gearshift lever stud assembly may not have been torqued to the correct specification which could result in the gearshift lever cable or stud assembly to become loose, making it difficult to engage, disengage or shift gears. Dealers will torque the gearshift lever stud assembly to the correct specification free of charge. Owners may contact Volvo at 1-800-458-1552 or customercare@volvoforlife.com.
  • Volvo Trucks is recalling certain model year 2001-2006 VNL and VNM trucks manufactured with a TRW sealed drag links. Certain factors can exist, which if left untreated may result in a ball socket separation resulting in complete loss of steering. Dealers will inspect and repair the ball socket or the drag link as required. The safety recall is expected to begin on or before August 15, 2010. Owners may contact Volvo Trucks at 1-800-528-6586

Subaru is recalling almost 30,000, 2010 Outback and Legacy vehicles built between July 31, 2009 and December 1, 2009 according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The problem affects cars with continuously variable transmission (CVT). The CVT cooler hose could crack and leak resulting in damage to the transmission and possibly start a fire. Subaru dealers will replace the hose for free, with parts being available sometimes this month.

If you own or think you own one of these cars and need more information, Subaru’s customer hot line is 856-488-8500. You can also try calling NHTSA’s vehicle safety hot line at 888-327-4236.