The Truth About Cars » recalls http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Wed, 29 Jul 2015 21:00:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars » recalls http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com Execs Refusing To Disclose Defects Won’t Go to Jail Anytime Soon http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/execs-refusing-to-disclose-defects-wont-go-to-jail-anytime-soon/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/execs-refusing-to-disclose-defects-wont-go-to-jail-anytime-soon/#comments Tue, 21 Jul 2015 22:00:34 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1122017 A U.S. Senate committee has shot down a number of auto safety measures including one that would hold executives criminally accountable for not disclosing known automotive defects, reports the New York Times. “Hiding these deadly defects with near impunity is what the industry has succeeded in doing,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., according to the story. […]

The post Execs Refusing To Disclose Defects Won’t Go to Jail Anytime Soon appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
General Motors CEO Mary Barra Testifies Before Senate Committee About GM's Recalls

A U.S. Senate committee has shot down a number of auto safety measures including one that would hold executives criminally accountable for not disclosing known automotive defects, reports the New York Times.

“Hiding these deadly defects with near impunity is what the industry has succeeded in doing,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., according to the story. He introduced many of the failed provisions.

Another proposal that would have made it illegal for used-car dealers to sell vehicles with outstanding recalls was rejected by the committee.

There were a few wins for Democrats backing stiffer penalties, however, as a proposal to raise the maximum civil penalty against automakers from $35 million to $70 million gained approval, as did a measure to ban rental car companies from renting vehicles with open recalls.

Two other proposals were withdrawn before they could be rejected. Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., said he would likely propose them later as amendments directly on the Senate floor.

The post Execs Refusing To Disclose Defects Won’t Go to Jail Anytime Soon appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/execs-refusing-to-disclose-defects-wont-go-to-jail-anytime-soon/feed/ 27
Senate Committee Says Rental Cars Must Have Recall Repairs http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/senate-committee-says-rental-cars-must-have-recall-repairs/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/senate-committee-says-rental-cars-must-have-recall-repairs/#comments Thu, 16 Jul 2015 18:00:55 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1117929 U.S. rental cars will need to comply with open recalls before being driven off the lots, a U.S. Senate panel decided Wednesday, according to Bloomberg. The measure was an about-face from an earlier proposal backed by automakers, consumer groups and some rental car companies, which would have allowed rental cars with known defects to continue to be […]

The post Senate Committee Says Rental Cars Must Have Recall Repairs appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
US Senate Wing of the Capitol

U.S. rental cars will need to comply with open recalls before being driven off the lots, a U.S. Senate panel decided Wednesday, according to Bloomberg.

The measure was an about-face from an earlier proposal backed by automakers, consumer groups and some rental car companies, which would have allowed rental cars with known defects to continue to be driven, as long as those defects were disclosed to consumers. NHTSA asked lawmakers to consider the proposal on pulling defective cars off the road in February.

The bill’s opponents said the revised amendment could harm consumers by filling dealerships with rental cars waiting to be repaired.

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., said preventing rental car companies from issuing cars with known defects would ultimately be safer for drivers.

“When consumers and families drive a rental car off the lot, they should be able to do so with the confidence that car is safe to drive, and we’re one step closer to that peace of mind today,” she said, according to Bloomberg.

The amendment is part of a much larger, comprehensive bill that tackles automakers’ recalls and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s ability to fine or penalize car companies.

The embattled bill, which was proposed by Republicans this month, would double the existing $35 million cap on fines for automakers and extra federal money for vehicle safety measures. Democrats opposed the larger measure, saying it didn’t go far enough. Democrats have introduced a much larger reform measure which would include a recall warning light for new cars.

 

The post Senate Committee Says Rental Cars Must Have Recall Repairs appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/senate-committee-says-rental-cars-must-have-recall-repairs/feed/ 20
QOTD: Does Anyone Care About Recalls? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/qotd-does-anyone-care-about-recalls/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/qotd-does-anyone-care-about-recalls/#comments Fri, 10 Jul 2015 11:00:15 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1112641 Another day, another recall. Or, at least, this seems to be the growing trend lately in the automotive industry. Years ago, I remember recalls being a rarity. My mom owns a Ford Escape that she bought new in 2003, and I distinctly remember her thinking about getting something else because she was worried about all […]

The post QOTD: Does Anyone Care About Recalls? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Escape to which mountain?

Another day, another recall. Or, at least, this seems to be the growing trend lately in the automotive industry.

Years ago, I remember recalls being a rarity. My mom owns a Ford Escape that she bought new in 2003, and I distinctly remember her thinking about getting something else because she was worried about all the recalls. It had, at the most, three. This is what used to pass for a high-recall vehicle.

No longer.

In today’s climate, cars are getting recalled all the time. Left and right. Cats and dogs. Every single day there’s a new automotive recall. I just got a recall for my 10-year-old SUV of which I’m the third owner. Nobody is safe.

The funny thing is, the sheer number of recent recalls has sort of desensitized everyone to the recall problem. It used to be when you got a recall notice, you were seriously concerned about safety and worried about your vehicle’s ability to drive down the street without something happening like the vehicle launching you into space because the supplier had unintentionally built 2,400 units with an ejector seat.

But in today’s world, we’ve seen it all. Toyota recalling millions of cars for floor mats and pedal issues. Chevrolet recalling tens of millions of cars for ignition switch problems. Honda recalling every car it has ever manufactured for faulty airbags, including a wide range of cars that didn’t have airbags, because Takata was putting explosive charges in the speedometer.

I think the result is that people just don’t care about recalls anymore.

I noticed this because I’ve started running a lot of Carfax reports over the last few months. I’ve paid for a subscription and I’ve started running reports on a wide range of cars, including vehicles on sale, vehicles I see on the street, vehicles I see on Craigslist. Anything, really. And what I’ve learned: an enormous number of them have open recalls.

What I think happens is people are starting to disregard recall notices more and more because they’re just coming so often. If you have any modern, popular vehicle, you might have four or five recalls currently outstanding, all of which will have parts reach dealers at a different time. That door lock recall? Oh, we’ll have parts in August. The brake spindle bladder? Parts won’t come in until October. But by then, we’ll be out of parts for the door lock recall. Better come in twice.

The interesting thing about this is, the latest climate of recalls has made it so oft-recalled cars are almost entirely unnoticeable. It used to be that if you were thinking about buying a car, and you learned it had been recalled a few times, you wondered if maybe you should consider something else. Somewhere else. Some other brand that isn’t making the kind of death trap that gets recalled a few times.

But now, you see a car that’s been recalled a few times, and you sort of expect it. What hasn’t been recalled, you think. And then you buy it, and you forget all about the recall, because God knows you’re going to get ten more notices in the mail until it’s time to dump it on the next poor sap.

And so I ask: does anyone care about recalls? Do you?

Me, I worry a bit about recalls. When I got my recall notice, I grew a little concerned, because I know this is a safety thing. No, it might not be affecting me right now, but if we’ve moved to the point where they’re doing a recall, it might affect me soon. So I’m a little cautious with these things.

But should I even be worried? Are cars actually made worse than they once were, and that’s why there are so many recalls? Or are automakers just scared of liability issues, so they’re being more cautious?

The public certainly seems to think it’s the second option, based on just how many recalls they aren’t going in for. Me, I’m not so sure. I made sure to ask about my recall the last time my car was at the dealer.

Their response? “Oh, those parts haven’t come in yet.”

Ahh, recalls. Maybe I’ll just forget about it.

The post QOTD: Does Anyone Care About Recalls? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/07/qotd-does-anyone-care-about-recalls/feed/ 41
FCA Set To Meet NHTSA Over Recalls Despite Desire To Cancel Hearing http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/fca-set-to-meet-nhtsa-over-recalls-despite-desire-to-cancel-hearing/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/fca-set-to-meet-nhtsa-over-recalls-despite-desire-to-cancel-hearing/#comments Fri, 05 Jun 2015 20:00:00 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1085601 Though FCA insists its compliance with the NHTSA over its recalls no longer merits a hearing, the agency will press forward with its order. The automaker is set to meet the agency for a special hearing July 2 to discuss its handling of 20 recalls covering 11 million vehicles since 2013, Detroit Free Press reports, […]

The post FCA Set To Meet NHTSA Over Recalls Despite Desire To Cancel Hearing appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2014 Jeep Cherokee Limited V6 Exterior-013

Though FCA insists its compliance with the NHTSA over its recalls no longer merits a hearing, the agency will press forward with its order.

The automaker is set to meet the agency for a special hearing July 2 to discuss its handling of 20 recalls covering 11 million vehicles since 2013, Detroit Free Press reports, and was sent a 12-page questionnaire to answer by June 1. FCA sent an 18-page response back to the NHTSA, giving details on its safety record, repair completion rates, and how it will handle safety concerns moving forward.

Thus, FCA believes a meeting the NHTSA is no longer necessary. However, NHTSA representative Gordon Trowbridge said the hearing will go on as planned, explaining the procedure “is a part of the process for determining whether the company has met its obligations.”

The agency itself praised FCA Thursday for its compliance with the order and thoroughness it was undertaken, while the automaker said it has taken a number of actions to improve product safety, including reviews of the recall process and creating a stand-alone organization to help with safety and compliance.

[Photo credit: Alex L. Dykes/The Truth About Cars]

The post FCA Set To Meet NHTSA Over Recalls Despite Desire To Cancel Hearing appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/fca-set-to-meet-nhtsa-over-recalls-despite-desire-to-cancel-hearing/feed/ 5
Ito Ousted as Honda CEO, Replaced by Takahiro Hachigo http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/ito-ousted-as-honda-ceo-replaced-by-takahiro-hachigo/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/ito-ousted-as-honda-ceo-replaced-by-takahiro-hachigo/#comments Mon, 23 Feb 2015 12:33:20 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1006354 Hans Greimel of the Automotive News is reporting that Takanobu Ito will be replaced in June by Takahiro Hachigo as president and CEO of Honda Motor Company. Ito’s replacement comes after a spate of recalls in its home market of Japan led to a delay in a number of new product launches, followed by the […]

The post Ito Ousted as Honda CEO, Replaced by Takahiro Hachigo appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Takanobu Ito

Takanobu Ito

Hans Greimel of the Automotive News is reporting that Takanobu Ito will be replaced in June by Takahiro Hachigo as president and CEO of Honda Motor Company. Ito’s replacement comes after a spate of recalls in its home market of Japan led to a delay in a number of new product launches, followed by the even more image corroding recall of millions of cars worldwide due to Takata supplied airbags that can detonate which have been linked to six deaths.

Ito in happier days

Ito in happier days

As changes in the Japanese and global markets force Honda to become less focused on Japan, Hachigo brings ample international experience to the job. He started his career at Honda in 1982 as a chassis design engineer in Honda’s automobile research and development department. In the 1990s he was assigned to Honda’s North American operations where he headed the development of the first generation of U.S. built Odyssey minivans, launched in 1999. With the success of the Odyssey, he was promoted to senior VP of Honda R&D Americas, localizing Hondas and Acuras for the American and Canadian markets. After a stint back in Japan in r&d, purchasing and then managing the Suzuka assembly plant, in 2012 he was named VP and director of Honda Motor Europe, later heading Honda’s European r&d center in the UK. Since 2013, he’s been in China, running Honda’s r&d, purchasing and motor technology team in that important market.

Takahiro Hachigo, Honda's incoming president and chief executive

Takahiro Hachigo, Honda’s incoming president and chief executive

Ito will remain with Honda as an adviser and member of the firm’s board of directors.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

The post Ito Ousted as Honda CEO, Replaced by Takahiro Hachigo appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/ito-ousted-as-honda-ceo-replaced-by-takahiro-hachigo/feed/ 3
Ito: Honda Won’t Help Takata Sort Its Affairs http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/ito-honda-wont-help-takata-sort-affairs/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/ito-honda-wont-help-takata-sort-affairs/#comments Mon, 23 Feb 2015 11:00:25 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1006282 Should the day come when Takata asks for financial assistance to remain afloat after its troubles have passed, Honda may not be there to lead the rescue. The Wall Street Journal reports Honda CEO Takanobu Ito stated as much during an autonomous vehicle demo in Asahikawa, Japan, dismissing rumors that the automaker planned to lead […]

The post Ito: Honda Won’t Help Takata Sort Its Affairs appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2015 Honda CR-V Touring

Should the day come when Takata asks for financial assistance to remain afloat after its troubles have passed, Honda may not be there to lead the rescue.

The Wall Street Journal reports Honda CEO Takanobu Ito stated as much during an autonomous vehicle demo in Asahikawa, Japan, dismissing rumors that the automaker planned to lead a bailout of the supplier:

Takata itself needs to figure out how to fulfill its duties, but if it makes any request to auto makers, then we would think about that.

Ito also warned that many of Takata’s clients would be in trouble if it was unable to supply the needed replacements for the defective airbag modules linked to the ongoing recall of 25 million affected vehicles around the world; Honda’s own vehicles account for half of the overall total.

For its part, Honda has begun working with rival suppliers Daicel and Autoliv to quickly replace the defective parts, as well as investigate what factors lead to the catastrophic failure of current units, and implementing recalls as needed.

The post Ito: Honda Won’t Help Takata Sort Its Affairs appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/ito-honda-wont-help-takata-sort-affairs/feed/ 0
Foxx: NHTSA Needs Staffing Increase To Keep Pace With Recalls http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/foxx-nhtsa-needs-staffing-increase-keep-pace-recalls/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/foxx-nhtsa-needs-staffing-increase-keep-pace-recalls/#comments Fri, 06 Feb 2015 11:00:38 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=994186 U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said on Tuesday the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration needs more staffing to keep pace with recalls. The Detroit News reports the secretary said as much during a brief conference call, asking for 56.5 new full-time positions and 57 people to keep up with the recalls: It’s no longer reasonable […]

The post Foxx: NHTSA Needs Staffing Increase To Keep Pace With Recalls appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Japanese-government-weighs-in-on-Takata-airbag-debacle

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said on Tuesday the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration needs more staffing to keep pace with recalls.

The Detroit News reports the secretary said as much during a brief conference call, asking for 56.5 new full-time positions and 57 people to keep up with the recalls:

It’s no longer reasonable frankly to expect an office with 8 screeners and 16 defects investigators to adequately analyze 75,000 complaints a year.

With the proposal from President Barack Obama’s FY 2016 budget plan that would triple funding of the NHTSA’s Office of Defects Investigation from $10.7 million to $31 million, the agency could bring aboard a mathematician, two statisticians, four investigators and 16 engineers to help fill the staffing gaps currently in play. Total staffing would climb above 100 personnel.

Additionally, the NHTSA would be able to use stronger methods of data mining and monitoring to develop a consumer awareness campaign to encourage owners to have their vehicles repaired, using integrated information pulled from social media, accident and fatality reports, medical records and manufacturing data to identify potential issues.

The post Foxx: NHTSA Needs Staffing Increase To Keep Pace With Recalls appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/foxx-nhtsa-needs-staffing-increase-keep-pace-recalls/feed/ 11
Next-Gen Honda Accord Foregoing Takata Airbags http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/01/next-gen-honda-accord-foregoing-takata-airbags/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/01/next-gen-honda-accord-foregoing-takata-airbags/#comments Mon, 26 Jan 2015 12:00:33 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=988450 When the next-gen Honda Accord arrives in U.S. showrooms in August 2017, no Takata airbags will be used in the sedan’s safety system. Reuters reports the automaker has chosen competitor Toyoda Gosei to supply driver-side, knee and curtain airbags for the North American version of the Accord. Additionally, Toyoda Gosei will supply units for the […]

The post Next-Gen Honda Accord Foregoing Takata Airbags appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2014 Honda Accord Hybrid Exterior-012

When the next-gen Honda Accord arrives in U.S. showrooms in August 2017, no Takata airbags will be used in the sedan’s safety system.

Reuters reports the automaker has chosen competitor Toyoda Gosei to supply driver-side, knee and curtain airbags for the North American version of the Accord. Additionally, Toyoda Gosei will supply units for the CR-V and Odyssey starting in 2016.

As for the airbags currently in play, Honda signed an agreement with another airbag competitor, Autoliv, to start production of replacement units for the 13 million-plus vehicles recalled by the automaker due to Takata-supplied airbags since 2008. Honda is also in discussions with Daicel Corporation for more replacement parts, as well.

The move toward Toyoda Gosei from Takata follows a request from General Motors for the supplier to share specs with both TRW Automotive and Autoliv in the event the automaker needs to replace airbags in its own vehicles. Over 21 million vehicles from 10 different manufacturers around the world have been recalled due to the potential for catastrophic failure of airbags made by Takata, resulting in five fatalities and several dozen injuries thus far.

The post Next-Gen Honda Accord Foregoing Takata Airbags appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/01/next-gen-honda-accord-foregoing-takata-airbags/feed/ 6
GM Recalls 988 Dealerships http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/11/gm-recall-988-dealerships/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/11/gm-recall-988-dealerships/#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 16:44:37 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=947185 In an unprecedented move that has sent chills down the white-belted spines of American car dealers, General Motors has declared nearly 1,000 of its 4,355 US retailers as “unfit and downright dangerous” to its customers and will be recalled immediately. GM Vice-President of Franchise Dealer Relations Bentley Reuss said in a news conference in Detroit […]

The post GM Recalls 988 Dealerships appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Closed Chevy Store Courtesy rekarchitects.con

In an unprecedented move that has sent chills down the white-belted spines of American car dealers, General Motors has declared nearly 1,000 of its 4,355 US retailers as “unfit and downright dangerous” to its customers and will be recalled immediately.

GM Vice-President of Franchise Dealer Relations Bentley Reuss said in a news conference in Detroit today that the manufacturer was, “equally concerned about our customers’ emotional and mental well-being as we were with their physical health when we did the ignition recall. When GM dealers berate car buyers, throw the keys to the their trades on the roof and fail to disclose products like Lifetime Tire Nitrogen on their contracts, it hurts our mutual clients.”

Reuss noted that an independent survey of recent buyers of GM products identified 988 dealers who handled the sales process poorly. Reuss was quick to point out this was not a termination of the affected retailers’ dealer agreements as that would be prohibited by state auto dealers franchise laws. “We had a ton of our recall lawyers about to bolt to Takata,” said Reuss. “We put them to work reviewing the state laws and they found there was nothing prohibiting a manufacturer from recalling a dealer when customer’s mental health was put in danger by a dealer.”

When asked about why this groundbreaking action was taken, in spite of the company’s excellent showing in the recent J. D. Power Sales Satisfaction survey, Reuss laughed and said, “You mean J.D. Monopoly? We and our dealers control that survey 100%. Let’s just say that it is amazing what free oil changes can do. We did our own independent survey which yielded accurate results.”

Reuss admitted that the dealer abuse of car buyers had been going on “for some time” but that GM senior management was never told about it until earlier this year and that the person in charge of customer satisfaction initiatives has been fired.

Empty-Car-Lot-Courtesy aldersonarts.com

Reaction from the recalled dealers was predictable. Said David White, owner of Brandywine Chevrolet in suburban Philadelphia, “Its ironic that when business is bad, GM wants you to move the iron at any cost, customer satisfaction be damned.  We’ve sold a ton of cars for Chevy and this is the thanks we get. The funny thing is that our local GM factory guy was in my office when the announcement came out and he was not told about it. It didn’t stop him from trying to sell us some of those crappy Volts, though.”

Recalled dealers’ inventory will be shipped to the nearest same-franchise dealership, with the exception of the Corvette which will be redistributed at “the local Zone Manager’s discretion,” said Reuss.

Reuss noted that their review also uncovered 28 Pontiac, Oldsmobile and Saab stores still in operation despite the elimination of those franchises in the late 2000’s. Those retailers will be terminated rather than recalled. “Those dealerships were actually showing great customer satisfaction numbers so we are sad to see them go. Again,” said Reuss.

Tesla stock rose on the GM recall news, though founder Elon Musk said, “There goes our plans to partner with Cadillac next year to sell our cars.”

If you couldn’t already tell, this is a satirical article. -Ed.

The post GM Recalls 988 Dealerships appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/11/gm-recall-988-dealerships/feed/ 77
Honda To Replace Takata Airbags Nationwide If Consumers Complain http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/11/honda-replace-takata-airbags-nationwide-consumers-complain/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/11/honda-replace-takata-airbags-nationwide-consumers-complain/#comments Tue, 18 Nov 2014 14:00:32 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=946634 Worried that the airbag in your Honda may shred your face instead of saving it? Complain loud enough, and the automaker will replace the unit in question. In a statement made to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration earlier this month, The Detroit News reports Honda will replace units nationwide if its customer base complains, […]

The post Honda To Replace Takata Airbags Nationwide If Consumers Complain appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2005-Honda-Accord-Sedan-Image-01-1024

Worried that the airbag in your Honda may shred your face instead of saving it? Complain loud enough, and the automaker will replace the unit in question.

In a statement made to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration earlier this month, The Detroit News reports Honda will replace units nationwide if its customer base complains, despite being limited at the moment to the 2.8 million under recall in high-humidity states, whose Takata airbag modules are at-risk for catastrophic failure:

It is our practice to repair these vehicles outside of these regions at the request of concerned customers. Additionally, we have a customer service procedure that addresses our individual customer needs and concerns and encompasses, as appropriate, the replacement of air bag inflators and the provision of or reimbursement for temporary alternative transportation.

Representative Chris Martin explained the move wasn’t made to bring in vehicles that were “secretly included” in the recall, but give peace of mind to those who own vehicles outside the recall effort. He added that a similar statement was posted on the automaker’s owner’s website, explaining to consumers of “certain” vehicles could bring in their cars for new airbags “as appropriate,” along with reimbursement for temporary transportation needs. Martin closed by stating Honda had “no reason to believe that there is a concern” for similar issues with the airbags outside of the recall area.

The post Honda To Replace Takata Airbags Nationwide If Consumers Complain appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/11/honda-replace-takata-airbags-nationwide-consumers-complain/feed/ 51
Is GM’s Recall Mania More Corporate Blundering or a Strategic Move? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/07/is-gms-recall-mania-more-corporate-blundering-or-a-strategic-move/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/07/is-gms-recall-mania-more-corporate-blundering-or-a-strategic-move/#comments Wed, 02 Jul 2014 21:13:19 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=857553 Megan McArdle, over at Bloomberg View, wonders out loud if the flood of recalls issued by General Motors, covering every car they’ve sold for the past three years and a wide swatch of the vehicles the company has made and sold over the past decade and a half is a deliberate strategy on the part […]

The post Is GM’s Recall Mania More Corporate Blundering or a Strategic Move? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
IonIgnitionSwitchRecall-page-001

Megan McArdle, over at Bloomberg View, wonders out loud if the flood of recalls issued by General Motors, covering every car they’ve sold for the past three years and a wide swatch of the vehicles the company has made and sold over the past decade and a half is a deliberate strategy on the part of the company to protect its  image with consumers from further harm. The strategy may be working. The sales reports for June show that the current sales of new GM vehicles seems to be unaffected by all of the publicity and controversy surrounding defective ignition switches that can shut off the car, rendering the airbag systems inoperable in case of a subsequent collision.

Some may see, in the recalls, just more of the same poor quality that many consumers associate, correctly or otherwise, with the domestic automakers, particularly GM. McArdle is not so sure that is how the massive recalls will ultimately play with the broad market:

I wonder if something else isn’t going on, something smarter. I wonder if GM hasn’t decided to go hog wild on the recalls because at this point they have nothing to lose.

There’s a point in a bad scandal where things have gotten about as bad as they could possibly get. New revelations don’t make things worse, because they hardly could be any worse. Instead, they get lost in the deafening noise of prior bad news.

At that point, it’s a good idea to announce anything that you’ve been worrying about might one day come out. People won’t really notice now, and by the time they’ve recovered sufficiently to take an interest, your worrisome story is old news.

What sayest the Best & Brightest on the matter? Blunder or brilliant?

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

The post Is GM’s Recall Mania More Corporate Blundering or a Strategic Move? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/07/is-gms-recall-mania-more-corporate-blundering-or-a-strategic-move/feed/ 34
GM’s Recall Mania Hits Suzuki http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/05/gms-recall-mania-hits-suzuki/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/05/gms-recall-mania-hits-suzuki/#comments Fri, 23 May 2014 17:57:32 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=829866 Poor Suzuki. Even as it tries to make a graceful exit from the U.S. market, they get mired in the latest round of General Motors recalls. Suzuki will be recalling 184,244 GM-made cars, sold as the Suzuki Forenza and Reno, but originating as the GM-made Daewoo Lacetti. Automotive News reports that the recall is related […]

The post GM’s Recall Mania Hits Suzuki appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Click here to view the embedded video.

Poor Suzuki. Even as it tries to make a graceful exit from the U.S. market, they get mired in the latest round of General Motors recalls.

Suzuki will be recalling 184,244 GM-made cars, sold as the Suzuki Forenza and Reno, but originating as the GM-made Daewoo Lacetti. Automotive News reports that the recall is related to a faulty part in the daytime running lights that could overheat and catch fire.

Suzuki’s U.S. auto operations filed for bankruptcy in late 2012, with the plan approved in early 2013.

The post GM’s Recall Mania Hits Suzuki appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/05/gms-recall-mania-hits-suzuki/feed/ 10
Open Thread: GM’s Newspeak, Or How Culture Defines A Company http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/05/open-thread-gms-newspeak-or-how-culture-defines-a-company/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/05/open-thread-gms-newspeak-or-how-culture-defines-a-company/#comments Fri, 16 May 2014 19:04:18 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=825089 Over at Jalopnik, Patrick George has uncovered an internal Powerpoint that sets out very clear guidelines for how recalls and other quality problems should be discussed. GM’s communications team has been prone to awkward outbursts before, but this takes things to an almost Orwellian level. GM employees are urged to avoid even mentioning the word […]

The post Open Thread: GM’s Newspeak, Or How Culture Defines A Company appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
GMConfidential

Over at Jalopnik, Patrick George has uncovered an internal Powerpoint that sets out very clear guidelines for how recalls and other quality problems should be discussed. GM’s communications team has been prone to awkward outbursts before, but this takes things to an almost Orwellian level.

GM employees are urged to avoid even mentioning the word “problem”, instead calling it an “issue” or “condition” or “matter”. There’s a longer list of bad words, including “Kevorkianesque” and “brakes like an X car”. Rather than detail the whole thing, I want to pose this question: this whole thing is presumably an exercise in media and communications management, but what does it say about a company culture when it actively discourages discussing problems in a frank and honest manner? I personally think that we’ve reached a point where this kind of heavy-handed attitude – one that expects the public to be too stupid to unquestioningly buy into the company narrative – does not work any longer. And I’m sure that GM isn’t the only firm that does this – they just happened to get caught.

The post Open Thread: GM’s Newspeak, Or How Culture Defines A Company appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/05/open-thread-gms-newspeak-or-how-culture-defines-a-company/feed/ 108
GM Rallies Rentals, Braces For Further Investigation http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/gm-rallies-rentals-braces-for-further-investigation/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/gm-rallies-rentals-braces-for-further-investigation/#comments Mon, 24 Mar 2014 12:35:40 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=779185 General Motors has issued a new recall for 355 vehicles, while also facing a possible lawsuit by an investor over “immorality”. GM may also face a new probe involving the automaker’s bankruptcy and its relation to the original recall that thrust GM into the headlines, just as the agency responsible for investigating the problem at […]

The post GM Rallies Rentals, Braces For Further Investigation appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Saturn-Ion-RedLine

General Motors has issued a new recall for 355 vehicles, while also facing a possible lawsuit by an investor over “immorality”. GM may also face a new probe involving the automaker’s bankruptcy and its relation to the original recall that thrust GM into the headlines, just as the agency responsible for investigating the problem at GM faces an audit from the Department of Transportation.

The New York Times reports the Justice Department has added an additional probe into their ongoing investigation of the 2014 recall of 1.76 million vehicles over a defective ignition switch linked to 31 crashes and 12 deaths.

The probe questions whether GM knew everything about the problem going into the 2009 bankruptcy — the automaker said they were alerted as early as 2001 — and failed to disclose the defect in full to both the federal government and the public during bankruptcy proceedings. This separate probe is being handled by the same group of FBI agents and federal prosecutors in New York who also brought forth the fraud case against Toyota that ended in a $1.2 billion settlement last week.

Meanwhile, Automotive News reports Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has asked the Department of Transportation’s inspector general Calvin Scovel to conduct an audit of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as to whether or not the agency properly looked into the issues leading up to the February 2014 recall, in light of the aformentioned crashes and deaths. The audit, according to Foxx, is to ensure “that DOT and NHTSA have a full understanding of the facts regarding the GM recall and can take corrective actions to enhance NHTSA’s safety function to the extent necessary and appropriate.”

On the investor front, Bloomberg reports a GM investor has filed a lawsuit against both the automaker and current CEO Mary Barra over every recall issued since late February this year.

In filing his complaint with the U.S. District Court in Detroit, George Pio called the automaker’s lack of immediate action “illegal and immoral,” and that news of the recalls, investigations et al surrounding GM as of late “triggered a sharp decline in the company’s share price, wiping out billions in shareholder value.”

The suit is filed on behalf of any individual who purchased stock between November 17, 2010 and March 10, 2014; no money damages have been specified.

Adding fuel to the fire are two stories from Edmunds, with the first related to the original recall regarding free loaner vehicles to those affected while their own vehicles are serviced beginning next month.

GM has called upon Enterprise, Hertz, Avis and other rental companies to help the automaker assemble a fleet for affected owners to use until the ignition switch is replaced. Though the original policy states GM owners are placed into GM vehicles, the scope of the original recall means if no related loaners are available, owners will be placed into vehicles from Ford, Honda, Chrysler et al. Underinsured owners will see a temporary boost in coverage from the automaker, as well. One source in the rental world tells us that this has been a massive undertaking for GM – with so many owners of the affected cars being under 25 (the minimum rental age at many companies) arranging coverage for these owners has been an extraordinary task.

As for the second report, Edmunds says 355 vehicles will be recalled within the week due to a transmission shift cable adjuster defect that could lead to a handful of 2014 models rolling away from where they were parked. Affected models include the Buick Regal, LaCrosse, Verano and Enclave; Chevrolet Cruze, Malibu and Traverse; and the GMC Acadia. All affected have the issue in their automatic transmissions.

The post GM Rallies Rentals, Braces For Further Investigation appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/gm-rallies-rentals-braces-for-further-investigation/feed/ 59
GM Receives 107-Question Survey Over Ignition Recall http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/gm-receives-107-question-survey-over-ignition-recall/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/gm-receives-107-question-survey-over-ignition-recall/#comments Fri, 07 Mar 2014 18:53:35 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=767281 General Motors, in the midst of a 1.6-million vehicle recall involving a faulty ignition switch discovered a decade earlier — and the resulting silence until late February of this year — must now answer a 107-question survey issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about the recall by April 3. Autoblog reports the 27-page […]

The post GM Receives 107-Question Survey Over Ignition Recall appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2007 Chevrolet HHR

General Motors, in the midst of a 1.6-million vehicle recall involving a faulty ignition switch discovered a decade earlier — and the resulting silence until late February of this year — must now answer a 107-question survey issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about the recall by April 3.

Autoblog reports the 27-page survey aims to collect more information about the timeline between the time the fault was found to the point the recall was finally issued, though more pages could be tacked onto the survey before the NHTSA decides on the proper course(s) of action, including multi-million dollar fines and criminal charges.

Question in the survey include a detailed look at GM’s examination process, future improvements to be made, thorough looks over each complaint regarding the defect, and why a replacement for the switch was ultimately delayed until near the end of the Cobalt’s life.

Meanwhile, GM CEO Mary Barra will be conducting a similar survey among all employees involved with the recall independently through an outside law firm.

The post GM Receives 107-Question Survey Over Ignition Recall appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/gm-receives-107-question-survey-over-ignition-recall/feed/ 18
Ignition Flaw Fallout Grows For GM http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/ignition-flaw-fallout-grows-for-gm/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/ignition-flaw-fallout-grows-for-gm/#comments Mon, 03 Mar 2014 15:00:24 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=760033 The years-long silence over a faulty ignition switch responsible for 13 deaths and a recall of 1.6 million vehicles made between 2003 and 2007 is about to take a greater toll on General Motors executives as federal investigations, lawsuits and penalties loom over the horizon. Automotive News reports General Motors’ response to the flaw may […]

The post Ignition Flaw Fallout Grows For GM appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
Chevrolet Cobalt SS Supercharged Sedan

The years-long silence over a faulty ignition switch responsible for 13 deaths and a recall of 1.6 million vehicles made between 2003 and 2007 is about to take a greater toll on General Motors executives as federal investigations, lawsuits and penalties loom over the horizon.

Automotive News reports General Motors’ response to the flaw may be too little, too late for the automaker. Though GM North America president Alan Batey proclaimed last week that GM would take an “unflinching look… and apply lessons learned” from their internal investigation over the lack of action and resulting silence regarding the ignition switch, former National Highway Traffic Safety Administration administrator and former consumer group Public Citizen president Joan Claybrook said the apology was all for naught:

That was a desperate move on their part to avoid heavy penalties. Saying ‘we’re sorry’ is not enough.

NHTSA announced they would be investigating the issue and its handling, and could issue as much as $35 million in fines. Meanwhile, Atlanta attorney Lance Cooper believes GM may be trying to get out in front of a lawsuit related to the ignition flaw by issuing the recall last month. Cooper recently settled a related lawsuit on behalf of the estate of Brooke Melton — whose 2010 death in a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt was the result of the switch cutting off engine power — for undisclosed terms:

I know a lot of good people at GM, and I know that GM is trying to turn itself around. But this is a black eye for the company, because of what they knew for so long and didn’t do anything about.

The post Ignition Flaw Fallout Grows For GM appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/03/ignition-flaw-fallout-grows-for-gm/feed/ 97
GM Adds 588,000 Vehicles To Ignition Recall http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/02/gm-adds-588000-vehicles-to-ignition-recall/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/02/gm-adds-588000-vehicles-to-ignition-recall/#comments Wed, 26 Feb 2014 14:41:06 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=754921 Originally affecting 780,000 2005 – 2007 Chevrolet Cobalts and Pontiac G5s, General Motors has now added another 588,000 vehicle in a recall to fix ignition switches that can lead to the engine being shut off. So far, 31 crashes and 13 front-seat deaths have been linked to the issue. Automotive News reports the newly affected […]

The post GM Adds 588,000 Vehicles To Ignition Recall appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2007 Saturn Ion Red Line

Originally affecting 780,000 2005 – 2007 Chevrolet Cobalts and Pontiac G5s, General Motors has now added another 588,000 vehicle in a recall to fix ignition switches that can lead to the engine being shut off. So far, 31 crashes and 13 front-seat deaths have been linked to the issue.

Automotive News reports the newly affected models include 2003 through 2007 Saturn Ions and 2006 through 2007 Chevrolet HHRs, Saturn Skys and Pontiac Solstices, bringing the total affected by the recall to 1.37 million.

The problem was first discovered in 2004 as the 2005 Cobalt entered showrooms, though GM took no action until December 2005, when the automaker issued a service bulletin advising dealers to advise their customers to not use heavy or large key chains. GM also offered an insert that would prevent keys from hanging too low or swinging too freely, thus preventing unintended ignition cut-offs.

By MY 2007, supplier Delphi began shipments of an approved replacement switch, followed in February 2009 by a redesign of the key to further reduce the risk of accidental shutdowns from an ill-timed bump. By the time the Cobalt left production in 2010, however, the damage was already done: a cluster of crashes where the ignition switch was bumped from “run” to “accessory” or “off,” disabling the airbag and other power systems (like the steering and vacuum assist for the brakes) prior to each crash. It wasn’t until the end of January of this year — after internal investigations were concluded — that a safety recall was finally issued.

GM North America President Alan Batey said in a statement that though his employer may not have been quick enough in issuing the recall, an issue the National Highway and Traffic Safety Association plans to examine, GM will take “an unflinching look at what happened” regarding the ignition recall, adding that customer safety was No. 1 on their list.

In the meantime, owners are advised to use the ignition with nothing adorning the key until their nearest dealer has a chance to inspect and replace the faulty switch. GM is also working with their suppliers to increase parts output in order to quickly introduce replacements into the chain.

The post GM Adds 588,000 Vehicles To Ignition Recall appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/02/gm-adds-588000-vehicles-to-ignition-recall/feed/ 20
Toyota Set to be #1 in Recalls for Fourth Time in Five Years http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/12/toyota-set-to-be-1-in-recalls-for-fourth-time-in-five-years/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/12/toyota-set-to-be-1-in-recalls-for-fourth-time-in-five-years/#comments Mon, 30 Dec 2013 13:00:36 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=689266 Barring a last minute campaign from another manufacturer, Toyota will be number one in recalls on the American market for 2013. This will be the second year in a row that Toyota has topped the recall rankings. Since the 2009 sudden unintended acceleration controversy, Toyota has led the nation in recalls every year except 2011. […]

The post Toyota Set to be #1 in Recalls for Fourth Time in Five Years appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>

camry3-450x238

Barring a last minute campaign from another manufacturer, Toyota will be number one in recalls on the American market for 2013. This will be the second year in a row that Toyota has topped the recall rankings. Since the 2009 sudden unintended acceleration controversy, Toyota has led the nation in recalls every year except 2011.

A recent overview published in the International Business Times highlights the recall problems of major OEMs globally, with a focus on the United States. Official NHTSA statistics for 2013 won’t be available until next month, but a rough count of major recalls places Toyota in the lead. In 2012, Toyota recalled 5.3 million cars for a variety of maladies. Honda was number two, with 3.3 million cars recalled. Lowlights in the recall race include Toyota’s 870,000 units with randomly deploying airbags due to spiders, Chrysler’s 280,000 units with potentially faulty rear axles and 2.7 million Jeeps for potential  fire hazard, BMW’s 569,000 units that could randomly shed battery cables leading to stalling, and Honda’s 777,000 units with missing rivets leading to airbag malfunctions.

None of Toyota’s major recall campaigns in the United States in 2013 were related to unintended acceleration. Instead, airbags and seatbelts top the list of problematic components. Besides the aforementioned airbag issues in Camrys and Avalons, Toyota recalled over 750,000 Corollas and Matrixes for problems with electronic circuitry that could lead to random deployment of airbags or seatbelt pretensioners. 209,000 FJ Cruisers and 342,000 Tacomas were also recalled for seat-belt issues, as were 170,000 other units for faulty airbag inflators. In addition, 615,000 Sienna minivans were recalled for transmissions that can slip out of park without prior application of the brakes. Although no cars in the U.S. were recalled for SUA-related issues in 2013, Toyota just announced a recall of 400,000 units in Saudi Arabia to install brake override systems. That recall is meant to address concerns about possible unintended acceleration.

Toyota’s problems with airbags can be traced at least partially to the widespread reliance of multiple manufacturers on large suppliers. As the IBT article explains, Toyota’s recall for faulty air bag inflators is part of a widespread problem that has also affected Honda, Nissan, and Mazda. All of these companies used air bags manufactured by the Takata Corporation at its Mexican facility from 2000-2002. All of these companies have announced recalls to address the same problem. This illustrates the way in which component defects at the supplier level can spread widely throughout the industry. If headaches like this continue for OEM’s, one has to wonder if they might insource more production of critical safety systems. At the very least, it is likely that suppliers of these components will face tighter scrutiny in an effort to avoid costly recalls.

The post Toyota Set to be #1 in Recalls for Fourth Time in Five Years appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/12/toyota-set-to-be-1-in-recalls-for-fourth-time-in-five-years/feed/ 74
Hyundai’s R&D, Product President, Engineering and Electronics Chiefs Resign Over Quality Issues http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/11/hyundais-rd-and-product-president-plus-engineering-and-electronics-chiefs-resign-over-recalls-and-quality-issues/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/11/hyundais-rd-and-product-president-plus-engineering-and-electronics-chiefs-resign-over-recalls-and-quality-issues/#comments Tue, 12 Nov 2013 14:00:23 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=648266 After consumer complaints over quality issues in its home market of Korea and a string of recalls there, in the U.S. and other countries. Hyundai Motor Group’s president for research and development, Kwon Moon-sik and two other executives in charge of engineering and electronics have resigned. The shakeup comes as the automaker prepares some important […]

The post Hyundai’s R&D, Product President, Engineering and Electronics Chiefs Resign Over Quality Issues appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
aje-new-oct-28

After consumer complaints over quality issues in its home market of Korea and a string of recalls there, in the U.S. and other countries. Hyundai Motor Group’s president for research and development, Kwon Moon-sik and two other executives in charge of engineering and electronics have resigned. The shakeup comes as the automaker prepares some important new vehicle launches.

The Hyundai group’s chairman, Chung Mong-koo, son of Hyundai founder Chung Ju-yung, has a reputation for firing (and rehiring) executives and he is also known for stressing quality. Chung is seen as responsible for changing the reputation of Hyundai from being seen as a maker of cheap, poorly made automobiles.

“The latest personnel change shows our firm commitment to quality management and reaffirms our will to continuously improve R&D competitiveness,” Hyundai said in a statement. The executives resigned to “take responsibility for a series of quality issues.” Replacements have not been named.

Last week Hyundai expanded its U.S. recall of the Genesis sedan to fix a potential problem with the brakes. So far almost 150,000 Genesis cars in the U.S. and Korea have been recalled. The recall notice comes as Hyundai is getting ready to launch the next generation Genesis in Korea later this month.

In April, Hyundai and Kia recalled more than 1.8 million vehicles in the United States because of a faulty brake switch, followed by a similar recall in South Korea, the largest in at least a decade there. Korean consumer have also complained of water leaks in Santa Fe SUVs and Elantra compatc sedans.

The post Hyundai’s R&D, Product President, Engineering and Electronics Chiefs Resign Over Quality Issues appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/11/hyundais-rd-and-product-president-plus-engineering-and-electronics-chiefs-resign-over-recalls-and-quality-issues/feed/ 30
2013 – 2014 Camaros Recalled Due to… Stickers? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/11/2013-2014-camaros-recalled-due-to-stickers/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/11/2013-2014-camaros-recalled-due-to-stickers/#comments Wed, 06 Nov 2013 19:02:32 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=644194 If you’re one of the few, proud owners of the slightly angrier-looking 2014 Camaro, or one of the many to own the slightly less angry 2013 model, you may need to send it back to correct a problem. No, not spiders this time. The recall is about stickers. That don’t stick. The recall involves the […]

The post 2013 – 2014 Camaros Recalled Due to… Stickers? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2014 Chevrolet Camaro

If you’re one of the few, proud owners of the slightly angrier-looking 2014 Camaro, or one of the many to own the slightly less angry 2013 model, you may need to send it back to correct a problem. No, not spiders this time. The recall is about stickers. That don’t stick.

The recall involves the air bag warning label on the sun visor coming undone, which warns both drivers and passengers that having an explosive bag of hot air and chemicals designed to save your life could also leave you with a few cuts and bruises upon impact. No word on how many have this particular issue, however (the stickers, that is).

In its letter to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Chevrolet says owners can bring in their defective stickers to their nearest dealership to be replaced with either a much stickier sticker, or a new sun visor. They also state that owners who don’t have this issue — assuming they would notice — can send a note saying all is well with the world, and at least no spiders were involved. This time.

The post 2013 – 2014 Camaros Recalled Due to… Stickers? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/11/2013-2014-camaros-recalled-due-to-stickers/feed/ 54
Toyota Recalls 870,000 Units Due To Arachnophobia http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/10/toyota-recalls-870000-units-due-to-arachnophobia/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/10/toyota-recalls-870000-units-due-to-arachnophobia/#comments Sat, 19 Oct 2013 16:07:23 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=627250 One blah Monday morning, you’re commuting to the anonymous office park some 90 minutes away from the bedroom community you call a home in your equally anonymous Toyota Camry Hybrid, listening to yet another story about Congress kicking cans down roads and/or some wacky antics your favorite DJs had the past weekend while you take […]

The post Toyota Recalls 870,000 Units Due To Arachnophobia appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
2012 Toyota Camry

One blah Monday morning, you’re commuting to the anonymous office park some 90 minutes away from the bedroom community you call a home in your equally anonymous Toyota Camry Hybrid, listening to yet another story about Congress kicking cans down roads and/or some wacky antics your favorite DJs had the past weekend while you take another swig of that mermaid-branded caffeinated goodness.

 

You’re not ready to deal with the myriad of reports you have to work on when you arrive at the office, and you’re certainly not ready for your colleague to rant about how his fantasy football team lost because one of his players sustained a career-ending injury on the first snap, but at least the piling traffic ahead of you seems to be delaying the inevitable, much to your mix of relief and chagrin.

Tired of being stuck behind the Dunkin’ Donuts truck (reminding you that you really need to hit the gym someday), you edge over to the (not really) faster moving lane on your left while wishing you could use the HOV lane at times like this when suddenly your airbag explodes, causing you to bash your alleged green machine into a Greyhound bus, kicking off a chain reaction that will take hours by the state police and first responders to sort out. You also make the news when the strangely chipper real-time traffic reporter chimes in about the wreck, which then leads to how Rockin’ Robin DeCradle “got totally wrecked” at the Waffle House of Blues this weekend.

Turns out the cause of your airbag going off was spiders, which you find out later that day when the local news reports that Toyota has issued a recall (again), affecting 870,000 vehicles including the one now residing in an insurance salvage yard that you, no doubt, are going to have a hard time collecting anything upon.

According to CNN Money, the 870,000 Toyotas are Camrys, Venzas and Avalons screwed together and sold for the 2012 and 2013 model years, hybrids included. The recall notice states that the webs spiders make within the confines of a drainage tube attached to the car’s AC unit could force water to drip onto the airbag’s control module, creating a short circuit followed by the airbag warning light (and the driver’s side airbag itself) going off. To make matters worse, the same issue can lead to loss of power steering, as well.

Toyota spokesperson Cindy Knight said that the company was aware of the spider issue, noting that 35 cases of the lights coming on and 3 airbag deployments have come to pass thus far, and the consistent cause of the problem were the eight-legged freaks who, for some reason, love making webs in AC drainage tubes.

The recall recommends owners take their cars in to their nearest dealer, who will then make the necessary repairs (and calls to the Orkin Man) to prevent water from causing unintended airbag deployments. The notice will be sent by mail, and the repairs will be on the house.

A similar issue affected Mazda back in 2011, when spiders set up shop in the vent lines of many a Mazda6’s gasoline tank, proving once again that nature is so fascinating.

The post Toyota Recalls 870,000 Units Due To Arachnophobia appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/10/toyota-recalls-870000-units-due-to-arachnophobia/feed/ 36
NHTSA Opens Preliminary Investigation Into Jeep Grand Cherokee Headliner Fires http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/08/nhtsa-opens-preliminary-investigation-into-jeep-grand-cherokee-headliner-fires/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/08/nhtsa-opens-preliminary-investigation-into-jeep-grand-cherokee-headliner-fires/#comments Fri, 23 Aug 2013 20:50:50 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=500632 Issues about fire safety continue to affect the Jeep brand as the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced today that it is opening an investigation into 146,000 2012 model year Grand Cherokees, after receiving reports from three consumers who say that the headliners of their cars caught fire near the passenger side sun visor. […]

The post NHTSA Opens Preliminary Investigation Into Jeep Grand Cherokee Headliner Fires appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
i2274785

Issues about fire safety continue to affect the Jeep brand as the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced today that it is opening an investigation into 146,000 2012 model year Grand Cherokees, after receiving reports from three consumers who say that the headliners of their cars caught fire near the passenger side sun visor.

“The customers reported a burning odor and visible smoke coming from the headliner while the vehicle was being driven. This was followed by flames from the headliner itself. Customers lowered the windows in an effort to clear the smoke but this increased the fire’s intensity. All three vehicles had to be extinguished with a fire extinguisher or by the fire department as they continued to burn after the vehicle was turned off . The fire also caused the sunroof to shatter in one incident, and in another, the fire spread to the passenger seat when the burning sun visor fell onto the seat. In each case, the incident resulted in the vehicle being inoperable requiring it to be towed to the dealership.”

A Chrysler spokesman said that the company is conducting its own investigation and that it is cooperating with NHTSA:

“Customer safety is paramount at Chrysler Group. Accordingly, our engineers are investigating this concern while also fully supporting the Preliminary Evaluation opened by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Jeep Grand Cherokee is among the safest vehicles on the road today. It also is the most awarded SUV ever.”

The investigation into burning headliners follows a voluntary recall of over 1.5 million 1992-98 Jeep Grand Cherokees and 2002-07 Jeep Libertys to address possible fires caused by leaking fuel tanks in the event of a collision, even though those vehicles met all applicable standards at time of manufacture. NHTSA has still not determined if it will crash test Jeep vehicles that have been recalled and retrofitted with a trailer hitch intended to protect the gas tank.

The post NHTSA Opens Preliminary Investigation Into Jeep Grand Cherokee Headliner Fires appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/08/nhtsa-opens-preliminary-investigation-into-jeep-grand-cherokee-headliner-fires/feed/ 39
NHTSA Administrator Says Compliance With Standards At Time of Production Not Enough http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/07/nhtsa-administrator-says-compliance-with-standards-at-time-of-production-not-enough/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/07/nhtsa-administrator-says-compliance-with-standards-at-time-of-production-not-enough/#comments Mon, 15 Jul 2013 17:59:22 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=495259 In an interview with Automotive News (registration required), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration director David Strickland said that if automakers want to keep their cars and trucks from getting recalled, those cars must not just meet standards in effect at the time vehicles are produced, but that the car companies must also make sure they stay […]

The post NHTSA Administrator Says Compliance With Standards At Time of Production Not Enough appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
strickland-2012

In an interview with Automotive News (registration required), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration director David Strickland said that if automakers want to keep their cars and trucks from getting recalled, those cars must not just meet standards in effect at the time vehicles are produced, but that the car companies must also make sure they stay as safe, statistically, as competitors’ products that use different designs.

 

Though he didn’t explicitly say so, his remarks could be read as saying that the agency will aggressively pursue recalls even though the involved vehicles met all standards in effect when they were built. Companies apparently will not be able to avoid recalls by saying that their cars and trucks met all applicable standards when sold new. Strickland’s comments were made against the backdrop of the voluntary inspection and retrofitting of trailer hitches on some Jeep models to reduce the risk of punctures to the rear mounted gas tanks in the event of rear collisions

“It really is based on the notion of unreasonable risk. And that is an evolving notion,” Strickland told the AN. He said that NHTSA is obligated to reassess risks “if state of the art moves all the peers in one direction, and it appears that there is another part of the fleet that has not made those same moves or improvements.” If car makers want to avoid recalls, they’ll have to remain “within the zone of reasonable risk”.

When Chrysler was first ordered to recall 2.7 million Jeep Grand Cherokee and Liberty SUVs, the company claimed that the agency was changing the rules. The dispute raised the issue as to what exactly is a “standard” if that standard is fluid and subject to retroactive change. “NHTSA seems to be holding Chrysler Group to a new standard for fuel tank integrity that does not exist now and did not exist when the Jeep vehicles were manufactured,” the company at first said after the recall was announced, though as mentioned the company and NHTSA came to an agreement about Chrysler doing the inspections and retrofits voluntarily.

Though Strickland said that the use of fluid standards isn’t the result of any new interpretation of the laws the agency enforces, he also said that using the “reasonable risk” standard was a tactical solution to “upgrading” standards when the slow pace of  changing the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards legislatively doesn’t move fast enough in the agency’s opinion.

“It’s very hard to change or upgrade a federal motor vehicle safety standard,” he said. “Sometimes it can be decades. Sometimes it can be 20 or 30 years.” Using a standard that changes retroactively based on the concept of reasonable risk, the NHTSA director added, allows the agency to “to backstop the inability to reach back and upgrade standards – because of cost and time and all sorts of other factors.”

The post NHTSA Administrator Says Compliance With Standards At Time of Production Not Enough appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/07/nhtsa-administrator-says-compliance-with-standards-at-time-of-production-not-enough/feed/ 97
Does BMW Have a Fire Safety Problem With All of Its Brands’ Turbos? 2,916 More Non-Chevy-Volts Recalled For Fire Hazard http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/04/does-bmw-have-a-fire-safety-problem-with-all-of-its-brands-turbos-2916-more-non-chevy-volts-recalled-for-fire-hazard/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/04/does-bmw-have-a-fire-safety-problem-with-all-of-its-brands-turbos-2916-more-non-chevy-volts-recalled-for-fire-hazard/#comments Tue, 17 Apr 2012 18:07:56 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=440363 It hasn’t gotten nearly as much attention as the handful of early production Tata Nanos that caught fire, or the Ferrari 458 recall, also for fire safety issues, or the newly expanded investigation into Jeep Wranglers burning, and certainly not nearly the attention given the near non-event with that one crash tested Chevy Volt, but […]

The post Does BMW Have a Fire Safety Problem With All of Its Brands’ Turbos? 2,916 More Non-Chevy-Volts Recalled For Fire Hazard appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>

It hasn’t gotten nearly as much attention as the handful of early production Tata Nanos that caught fire, or the Ferrari 458 recall, also for fire safety issues, or the newly expanded investigation into Jeep Wranglers burning, and certainly not nearly the attention given the near non-event with that one crash tested Chevy Volt, but BMW appears to have a corporate wide fire problem with turbocharged models that has now resulted in recalls of BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce vehicles. Earlier this year BMW recalled turbocharged Mini Cooper models because the circuit board controlling the auxiliary water pump used to cool down the turbocharger after the engine is shut off could develop an electrical fault due to copper migrating between circuit traces, creating a fire hazard. Now comes word that BMW is expanding a previous recall (PDF) of some 2010 BMW and Rolls-Royce models to include 2011 and 2012 models. It’s not clear if it’s the exact problem as with the Minis, though it does involve the same component, the electronic controller for the auxiliary water pump. To their credit, BMW discovered the latest problem in internal testing and there is no word on any real-world fires with consumers’ cars. The Mini recall was prompted by reports of a dozen fires, eight of them while the vehicles were parked. The latest recall (PDF) affects 2011 BMW 5 Series, and 2012 6 Series, 7 Series and X5 and X6 vehicles. Also affected are 2010-2011 Rolls-Royce Ghosts, which are built with a BMW platform and share components with the parent brand. BMW says the problem exists with 100% of the turbocharged V8 and V12 powered models in those lines. A total of about 35,000 BMW made vehicles are affected by the original and expanded BMW and Rolls-Royce recalls.

In the initial voluntary recall last October, BMW attributed the problem to an unspecified malfunction in the electronic controller. It’s possible that it’s the same problem as with the Minis.

Under certain conditions, the pump’s electronic circuit board can malfunction. The malfunction can occur as a result of certain design features in combination with high operating temperatures. Under these conditions, this can lead to a failure of the water pump. In some cases, the circuit board can overheat. In an extreme case, overheating of the circuit board can lead to smolder of the water pump. If smoldering occurs, it cannot be excluded that this may also lead to an engine compartment or vehicle fire.

In the subsequent expanded recall, BMW attributed a problem with later production vehicles to improperly made turbocharger housings, resulting in leaking coolant.

It was discovered that for the additional production, there was a manufacturing process deviation at the supplier for this limited production run of pumps, this deviation could result in cracks in the pump housing. If this were to occur, then coolant could enter and contact the pump’s circuit board.

Whether or not it’s the same exact defect affecting Minis, BMWs and Rolls-Royces, it’s clear that BMW has quality and fire safety problems involving its turbochargers’ water pumps. The recall notice sent to NHTSA from BMW identifies the faulty component supplier as Pierburg Pump Technologies GmbH.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can dig deeper at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

The post Does BMW Have a Fire Safety Problem With All of Its Brands’ Turbos? 2,916 More Non-Chevy-Volts Recalled For Fire Hazard appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/04/does-bmw-have-a-fire-safety-problem-with-all-of-its-brands-turbos-2916-more-non-chevy-volts-recalled-for-fire-hazard/feed/ 36
Automotive Lawsuit History Unearthed, Junkyard Style: The Ford Park-To-Reverse Warning Label http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/03/automotive-lawsuit-history-unearthed-junkyard-style-the-ford-park-to-reverse-warning-label/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/03/automotive-lawsuit-history-unearthed-junkyard-style-the-ford-park-to-reverse-warning-label/#comments Sat, 31 Mar 2012 13:15:32 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=437296 For decades, I’ve been seeing Ford-family vehicles with ugly, pointless warning labels stuck to their instrument panels: Unexpected and possibly sudden vehicle movement may occur if these precautions are not taken. I’d always assumed that these were ex-rental cars, but after I mentioned the warning stickers in this week’s ’75 Ford Maverick Junkyard Find post, […]

The post Automotive Lawsuit History Unearthed, Junkyard Style: The Ford Park-To-Reverse Warning Label appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
For decades, I’ve been seeing Ford-family vehicles with ugly, pointless warning labels stuck to their instrument panels: Unexpected and possibly sudden vehicle movement may occur if these precautions are not taken. I’d always assumed that these were ex-rental cars, but after I mentioned the warning stickers in this week’s ’75 Ford Maverick Junkyard Find post, several readers pointed out that the stickers were the result of Malaise Era litigation. Of course!
It turns out that many Ford automatic transmissions of the 1966-1980 period developed a tendency to slip from Park to Reverse, on their own, leading to lots of unpleasantness (if we are to believe Ralph Nader’s Center For Auto Safety, this problem caused 6,000 accidents, 1,710 injuries, and 98 fatalities). Since we’re talking about something like 23 million vehicles here, Ford resisted launching the biggest recall in automotive-industry history; the DOT agreed in 1980 to have Ford send out warning labels to the 23 million affected owners. Some of them used the stickers, most didn’t, and we still see them from time to time in junked Fords, Lincolns, and Mercurys. So, another bit of junkyard-learned Malaise Era automotive history, a nice chaser to the story of the FLOOR TEMP warning light.

The post Automotive Lawsuit History Unearthed, Junkyard Style: The Ford Park-To-Reverse Warning Label appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/03/automotive-lawsuit-history-unearthed-junkyard-style-the-ford-park-to-reverse-warning-label/feed/ 50