Consumer Alert: Subaru to settle over motor oil problems

Subaru is offering a settlement to drivers of some of its vehicles found to burn excessive amounts of oil. News 12 New Jersey's Walt Kane breaks it down in this week's Kane In Your Corner Consumer Alert.

Carlos Guerra says he had to add oil to his 2013 Subaru Outback every couple of weeks, and nothing his dealer's service department did could fix the problem. "I even had one time where I actually took the car in because of the (oil) light, and as I was driving down the street from the dealer, the light came back on," Guerra says.

It appears the excessive oil consumption was caused by defective piston rings in some models. Guerra hired a lawyer and worked out a financial settlement, and Subaru is now offering to settle with drivers of affected vehicles, to put an end to a class-action lawsuit. Under the deal, which would kick in automatically unless consumers opt out, Subaru would extend manufacturer's warranties to 100,000 miles and pay for all repairs related to the defect.

Automotive attorney Bob Silverman says each car owner should decide whether to accept the settlement based on their own individual situation. "It's great for you if you don't have a problem," he says. "If you've already had a problem with your car, and it's burning a lot of oil already, I would opt out," he says.

The Subaru settlement is expected to be made final at a court hearing in July. After that, drivers should be notified of their rights.

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