GM Issues a 'Stop Sale' After Incorrect Fuel Economy Labels Found on Full-Size Crossovers

gm issues a 8216 stop sale after incorrect fuel economy labels found on full size

General Motors is in damage control mode following the discovery of incorrect fuel economy ratings on the window stickers of its 2016 full-size crossovers.

A “stop sale” order was issued to GM dealers on Wednesday after EPA labels on GMC Acadia, Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave vehicles were shown to overstate mileage by one to two miles per gallon, Automotive News reports.

Nearly 60,000 vehicles are sidelined until replacement Monroney stickers arrive at dealerships between today and Tuesday.

There’s no evidence that points to intentional deception, but it’s a bad time for any automaker to face a misleading fuel economy controversy, given the scandal currently consuming Mitsubishi in its home country.

GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson told Automotive News that the mistake can be pinned on a faulty “data transmission,” adding that GM informed the Environmental Protection Agency as soon as the issue was discovered. The EPA has since requested all information pertaining to the issue.

A memo from GM to dealers stated an “inadvertent error” led to the wrong figures appearing on the labels.

The EPA rating for all-wheel-drive versions of the vehicles should be 15 mpg in the city, 22 highway, and 17 combined, but the incorrect labels added 2 mpg to each figure. Front-drive models added 1 mpg to the actual combined rating.

The issue is more than just bad optics for GM — it means tens of thousands of vehicles were bought under false assumptions, and those customers won’t see the gas mileage their window sticker promised.

To keep the peace, the automaker might have to reimburse customers for the difference in mileage, though for now, GM is notifying buyers and creating a plan to deal with any backlash. With the EPA still looking into how the figures made their way onto stickers, there’s no word yet on penalties.

Wilkinson said that unspecified changes made to the models for the 2016 model year required the printing of new EPA ratings.

[Image: General Motors]

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  • Brett Woods Brett Woods on May 14, 2016

    It's interesting to see which other corporations hold 10% or 15% interests in the big brands. You may also have observed over the years, big brands buying out alternative fuel competitors, supposedly as exciting ways to get 'in' on new tech, and then slowly folding them. How about "experienced in energy" double agent executives gaining top positions at alternative energy powerhouses that subsequently suffer massive performance failures? It can be no coincidence these GM vehicles use the same amount of fuel as they did 40 years ago. It must be designed that way as part of a strategic business model that takes a lot of effort to make happen. Neither do I expect that a systematic fraud which conveys a competitive advantage in the market place is the fortuitous result of bumbling fools at the printing house. But then I say Lewis Hamilton could not have had - cracked brake pad, loose fuel line, 2 start mode glitches, 2 computer failures; while his team mate had none. The odds of that happening randomly are 0.1%. Call Mulder and Scully.

    • JohnTaurus JohnTaurus on May 15, 2016

      Right, because cars of 40 years ago had the same safety and luxury features that they do today (power everything, ABS, airbags, aircon on almost every vehicle, larger brakes, larger wheels/tires, infotainment systems, etc). Not to mention that cars that got the same MPG as, say, a Cruze or Sonic, etc had far less power and were super strippers with nothing in the way of comfort/convinence/safety features. They also drove like horrible little roachmobiles and had ghastly crash protection. If you took someone from 1976 who drove an economy car and put them in a modestly-equipped 2016 Cruze, theyd think you handed them they keys to an exceptional small Cadillac. Hell, the Cruze probably has similar HP as an emissions-strangled '76 V-8 Caddy. So, how many 1976 Chevys got over 40 MPG like the Cruze (some models IIRC), Sonic or Spark? How about mid-30s like a Malibu? And what kind of power did they make compared to 2016s? What 1976 full size truck broke 25 mpg? Take off your tin foil hat and let the chemtrails do their job.

  • Big Al from Oz Big Al from Oz on May 15, 2016

    Is this a violation or error??? The article alludes to error, but I wonder. Was their a shortage of labels? If a shortage existed then it's odd how the EPA stickers displayed better FE. Fine them for being deceitful and so stupid, like VW.

    • See 2 previous
    • Robert.Walter Robert.Walter on May 16, 2016

      @JohnTaurus Nice revisionist take on things. Crooks never expect to get caught (assuming the fine is greater than the benefit of the crime), but once outed they appear to do clean up like non crooks do. I'm not saying gm is guilty, just that there needs to be s deep dive to prove that they are not playing again.

  • Snickel Fritz I just bought a '97 JX 4WD 4AT, and though it's not quite roadworthy yet I am already in awe of it's simplicity and apparent ruggedness. What I am equally in awe of, is the scarcity of not only parts but correct information regarding anything on this platform. I'm going to do my best to get this little donkey back on it's feet, but I wouldn't suggest this as a project vehicle for anyone who doesn't already have several... and a big impressive shop with a full suite of fabrication/machining/welding equipment, and friends with complimentary skillsets, and extra money, and... you get the idea. If you don't, I urge you to read up on the options for replacing anything on these rigs. I didn't read enough before buying, and I have zero of the above suggested prerequisites... so I'm an idiot, don't listen to me. Go buy all of 'em!
  • Bryan Raab Davis I actually did use the P of D trope, but it was only gentle chiding, for I love old British cars of every sort.
  • ScarecrowRepair The 1907 Panic had several causes of increased demand for money:[list][*]The semi-annual shift of money between farms and cities (to buy for planting and selling harvests)[/*][*]Britain and Germany borrowing for their naval arms race[/*][*]San Francisco reconstruction borrowing after the 1906 earthquake and fire[/*][/list]Two things made it worse:[list][*]Idiotic bans on branch banking, which prevented urban, rural, and other state branches from shifting funds to match demands. This same problem made the Great Depression far worse. Canada, which allowed branch banking, had no bank failures; the US had 9000 failures.[/*][*]Idiotic reserve requirements left over from the Civil War which prevented banks from loaning money; they eventually started honoring IOUs illegally and started the recovery.[/*][/list]Been a while since I read up on it, so I may have some of the details wrong. But it was an amazing clusterfart which could have been avoided or at least tamed sooner if states and the feds hadn't been so ham handed.
  • FreedMike Maybe this explains all the “Idiots wrecking exotic cars” YouTube videos.
  • FreedMike Good article! And I salute the author for not using the classic “Lucas - prince of darkness” trope, well earned as it may be. We all know the rap on BL cars, but on the flip side, they’re apparently pretty easy to work on (at least that’s the impression I’ve picked up). On the other hand, check the panel fits on the driver’s and passenger’s doors. Clearly, BL wasn’t much concerned with things like structural integrity when it chopped the roof off a car designed as a coupe.