Though it took over a decade to issue a recall over the out-of-spec ignition switch at the heart of its ongoing debacle, General Motors is being thorough with the part now, performing 16 tests — in addition to the 80-plus before them — to confirm no harm will come the way of the 2.6 million owners affected.
Reuters reports the tests went as far as removing the switch indent plunger and spring for ease of ability to knock the switch out of the “run” position, only to find the key remained in place with just its unadorned key ring attached according to a filing made to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration by GM earlier this month.
The filing comes on the heels of a number of parties demanding the automaker to issue a park-it-now notice to all affected customers. Both the NHTSA and a federal judge later found the automaker’s temporary fix was sound, and that no such notice was warranted.
The 16 tests — which did not include a scenario where an errant knee accidentally bumps the switch out of position — are part of an overall total of over 100 designed to prove the switch — and the vehicles to which it is installed — are safe to run until a replacement is swapped-in. The testing occurred between late February through early April of this year, conducted upon rough roads with the kind of panicked stops that would move the switch out of place with an unadorned key inserted.