The recall involves model year 2010 and 2011 Legacy and Outback vehicles and model year 2006 through 2012 Tribeca vehicles sold before January 2012. Model year 2009 through 2012 Forester vehicles sold before January 2012 are also involved, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Thursday.
The NHTSA said 53,999 of these vehicles may have "puddle lights," that illuminate the under side of the door and these lights can develop a short circuit problem after exposure to road spray or road salt.
"Over time, migration of the moisture into the circuit board and/or into the connector cavity (of the puddle lights) may result in a short circuit. ... This may generate heat which may melt the plastic resulting in smoke or fire," the federal agency said.
Subaru said a recall would commence in February and that dealers would install an additional fused harness in affected vehicles free of charge.
Consumers can call 800-782-2783 for information.
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