Premature timing belt failure is not uncommon. The recommended service interval is 60K, but belt failures before that mileage have been noted. This 1.8L engine is considered "free-wheeling", therefore the chances of valve damage if the timing belt fails is minimal.
Premature timing belt failure on Subaru Loyale
Average mileage: 113,332 (60,000–166,664)
7 people reported this problem
1990 Subaru Loyale 166,664 mi, Visitor
the belt on the driver side stripped clean. just got it apart. can I replace just the bad belt? n put it back together. paid $200 for the car not trying to spend more or do more then I have too.