Listen to music and possibly go up in flames? Not good.
It turns out that some owners of 2015 model year Subaru WRXs could potentially start a car fire simply by turning on the car's subwoofer. Subaru has issued a recall with the NHTSA for 9,178 WRXs built for 2015 due to faulty circuitry in the optional factory installed subwoofer. An electrical short could cause the subwoofer, which is located in the trunk, to overheat and potentially cause a fire. This isn't just one of those "you never know" types of recalls. Subaru admits it received two reports, one coming from Australia, of subwoofers overheating.
The official recall notice doesn't state whether there were any related injuries, but the fact remains these subwoofers have faulty circuitry. Fortunately, Subaru already has a repair ready to go and, as is the case with all recalls, will be done free of charge for these owners. The fix involves installing a spacer in between the subwoofer's wire and frame. Pretty simple. But if dealership technicians discover that one of the subwoofer's wires has been dislocated from its proper position, the subwoofer itself will be replaced with a new one that will also include that spacer kit. Subaru will also replace the subwoofer amplifier if it's damaged.
The automaker, conveniently enough, updated the subwoofer for the 2016 model year for other reasons, so that's why only 2015 WRXs are affected. Owners of these WRXs will be notified shortly with instructions about their upcoming dealer visit.