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Subaru of America, Inc. Announces Voluntary Recall of Certain 2003 Model Year Forester Vehicles; Campaign Affects Approximately 500 Forester Models

    CHERRY HILL, N.J., Feb. 19 -- Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA)
today announced a voluntary recall for a possible defect in the front seat
belt buckle latch of certain 2003 model year Forester models.  This recall
involves both front seat belt buckles that were installed in approximately 500
2003 model year Forester vehicles produced between December 9 and December 31,
2002.  The seat belt may unlatch when a force less than that required by the
federal motor vehicle safety standards is applied.  A stop sale notice has
been issued to dealers who have received any of the potentially affected
    The campaign was launched as a result of out-of-specification parts found
during quality assurance testing.  There have been no reported injuries as a
result of this condition.
    Repair parts should be available during the week of February 24, 2003.
Subaru will provide a campaign bulletin to dealers, and a recall notice will
be sent to all registered owners who have already purchased one of the
affected vehicles, advising them of the potential defect.  Dealers will
replace the front seat belt buckles of all potentially affected Forester
    For additional information about Subaru of America, Inc. and Subaru
vehicles, visit the company's media web site at

    About Subaru of America, Inc.
    Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy
Industries Ltd. of Japan.  Subaru is the only manufacturer to offer all-wheel
drive as standard equipment on every vehicle.  The Subaru Legacy is the best
selling All-Wheel Drive car sold in America, based on the Polk Company retail
registration statistics as of 12/31/01.
    Headquartered near Philadelphia, the company markets and distributes
Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of 582 dealers across
the United States.  All Legacy, Outback, and Baja models sold in the United
States are produced at the Subaru-Isuzu Automotive Inc. manufacturing plant
near Lafayette, Ind.  Over the past eight years, the company has seen its
sales increase by nearly 100 percent thanks to its popular line of passenger
car-based sport utility vehicles and driving performance vehicles, and is
among the fastest growing brands in the automobile industry.

     Contacts:  Mike Whelan                  Don Bearden
                Subaru of America, Inc.      Subaru of America, Inc.
                (856) 488-3326               (856) 488-8644