Common Issues for Imports

Welcome back to our third installment in our blog series about the history, popularity, and repair needs of your favorite import cars. In part one of our blog, we discussed the histories of Lexus and BMW, as well as some of the common issues that may arise in both brands. Part two of our blog series discussed the rich history of Volvo and Audi, as well as frequent problems that their owners have mentioned. Even high-quality, durable foreign-made cars can start to have hiccups eventually. For this reason, it’s important to keep up with their maintenance at your Colorado Springs specialty mechanic.

Though we’ve already written two blogs on foreign cars, it feels that we’ve barely scratched the surface. There are so many import car companies to note and we simply can’t discuss all of them in detail. However, we’ve chosen some of our favorites for your reading pleasure. In today’s blog, we’re going to look at our final two choices for featured imports: Subaru and Volkswagen.


Writing in the Colorado Springs area, where we’re we’ve got a perfect view of Pikes Peak in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, we know that Subaru cars hold a somewhat special place in our hearts. These cars, known as the SUV-Cars, are perfect for driving curvy, snow-covered mountain roads because of their box engines, splendid handling, and of course, four-wheel-drive. In case you somehow haven’t noticed, Subarus are incredibly popular in this area. In addition to being loved by folks in Northern Colorado, Subarus are also incredibly popular in areas like the Pacific Northwest. But what about Subaru’s beginnings?

In 1915, the company now known as Subaru was headed up by a man named Chikuhei Nakajima. Nakajima’s company, at that time called Nakajima Aircraft Company, soon became a major manufacturer of airplanes for Japan in WWII. After the war, the company’s name was changed to Fuji Heavy Industries and began to change their focus to making cars. The name Subaru was adopted a few years after this name change when the company’s CEO decided to take the name of the Japanese Pleiades star cluster. Thus, the first Subaru car was produced in 1954, with additions and improvements coming out consistently every few years for the decades that followed. Today, Subaru is the twenty-second largest automaker in terms of production and have all-but perfected their marketing campaigns all around the world. And though Subarus rank above the national average for customer retention by J.D. Power and Associates, there are still a few common issues to make a note of.



  • Low Catalytic Converter Efficiency – When your check engine light turns on, it could be for a number of reasons, but thankfully, you can fairly easily figure out what is wrong with your Subaru. When your light appears and it’s because of a failed catalytic converter, this could actually cause your car to fail the state smog test. If your check engine light came on recently, go ahead and seek out a qualified service pro for your Subaru repair.
  • Failed Front O2 Sensor – Another common reason for your check engine light to illuminate is the failure of the front oxygen (air-fuel ratio) sensor. Sometimes, this sensor can develop a small fissure and this causes your light to turn on. The solution to a failed O2 sensor can be quite simple; just make sure that you get your car to a qualified Subaru repair shop.
  • Vibration When Accelerating – When a Subaru’s transmission torque converter is failing, this will cause your vehicle to shudder when you accelerate. When you start to notice this vibration, (it may start out small) make sure that you’re taking your Subaru into your Colorado Springs mechanic.


For our final selection in our blog series, we’ve landed on a classic: Volkswagen. With its beginnings in the 1930s, this German-made line of cars has grown to be one of the largest automakers in the world. Volkswagen, meaning, “the people’s car” in German, started in 1937 by the German Labor Front. During WWII, like many other European Automakers, Volkswagen, or VW, largely produced vehicles for military use. Since then, because of their quality, affordability, safety ratings, and fuel efficiency, Volkswagen has grown to be some of the most widely sold cars and promise to have electric versions for all of their cars by the year 2030. What’s not to love about VW? Even though there was some drama with the emissions issue back in 2008, most people who have owned them still swear by Volkswagen but they’re not infinite vehicles. Let’s talk about some of the most commonly reported issues with VW cars.

  • Oil Sludge – In some early VW models, build-up from oil sludge has been reported starting around 70,000 miles. If there aren’t significant issues with the engine, this may actually be due to the VW owner not adhering to the manufacturer’s guidelines for oil changes. Make sure that when you do need an oil change or tune-up, that you’re seeking out your Volkswagen mechanic.
  • Wiring Harness Shorts – When these shorts are present, they’re often seen in models that have more than 100,000 miles. As electrical problems in your car are never convenient to deal with, make sure that you take that in when you start to notice any electric issues with your Volkswagen.
  • Airbag Malfunctioning Light – Another issue that seems to rear its ugly head around the 100,000-mile mark is the illumination of the airbag malfunctioning light. When you see this light turn on, make sure that you get your vehicle into your Volkswagen repair shop as soon as possible. Did you know that, upon being stopped by a policeman, you could be fined for this light being on? It’s definitely worth getting it looked at.

We sure hope that you’ve enjoyed learning all about some of our favorite imports! Foreign cars are often such great quality and we can’t help but be a little excited about them. If you’re a resident of the Colorado Springs area, or you’re just visiting, and you’ve been looking for qualified, professional mechanics to take care of your foreign baby, make sure you talk to the experts at Your Import Car Doctor. We specialize in the service of luxury vehicles; BMW repair, Lexus repair, Volvo service, Audi repair, Saab services, as well as standard imports such as Toyota and Subaru. Additionally, if you’ve got an American-made vehicle, we’re qualified to work on those too! No matter the car’s type, we’ll get you in so that you can be on your way! Contact us today!