Takata recall now includes hundreds of thousands of Pontiac cars

Detroit, MI — June 30, 2015 — Major manufacturers have been adding more vehicles to the recall numbers in light of the Takata airbag inflator difficulties. According to the Associated Press, General Motors is one of these companies, including hundreds of thousands of Pontiac Vibes from across North America produced within a four year period in their recall.

As with the other Takata recalls, the reason for this one remains the same: airbag inflators could explode, sending dangerous shrapnel into the vehicle’s interior that could hurt the passengers, perhaps fatally.

A total of more than 243,000 Vibes have been included in this recall, which the source says were co-designed by Toyota. That company has also undertaken a further expansion of its original Takata airbag recall by adding millions of vehicles to it earlier this month.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also recently announced that it had successfully tracked every vehicle with a defective Takata airbag system installed and uploaded Vehicle Identification Numbers for easy reference. Anthony Fox, the United States Secretary of Transportation, recently said that this tool will play a role in addressing the amount of vehicles out there that still have these faulty systems installed.
“An informed consumer is one of our strongest allies in ensuring recalled vehicles are repaired,” he said. “NHTSA’s VIN search tool at safercar.gov makes it easy for consumers to check if their vehicle is affected by the recall, and to take action in getting the air bags replaced.”

Functioning recall systems effectively communicate relevant information so dealers and consumers will benefit and be able to reduce the possible amount of further accidents. Even though the investigation into Takata-related problems seems ongoing, proper recall action can be a sort of antidote to the increasing number of cars added to the effort.

Recall MastersTakata recall now includes hundreds of thousands of Pontiac cars

New Subaru recall targets Driver Assist System

Tokyo, Japan — June 29, 2015 — According to a document from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Subaru of America is recalling 72,000 vehicles as part of campaign to correct an automatic braking system failure that could leave drivers at greater risk of damage during a sudden stop. Though affected cars will still have a functioning warning indicator to signal to drivers, they could still be vulnerable to a crash due to a failure of the pre-collision brakes.

As the NHTSA letter describes, the recall pertains to four specific brands from model year 2015 and one for 2016: the Impreza, Legacy, Outback, WRX and XV Crosstrek. The flaw can be corrected through a software update: according to USA Today, manufacturer representative Dominick Infante called the solution “really an easy fix.”

The Eyesight Driver Assist System is the official name of the unit that this recall concerns. The letter elaborates on some of the conditions that will trigger the dangerous action.
“If the switch that activates the brake lights fails, the automatic pre-collision braking component of the driver assist system will not function,” the source states. “If the automatic pre-collision braking system does not function as intended, the vehicle will not react to an obstacle in its path, increasing the risk of a crash.”

Even though a major recall-worthy action may be traced back to a simple software repair, the necessary actions for fixing the problem need to be corrected and taken as seriously as any other possible fault. Conducting a professional-level recall will take the proper message to the dealers and owners alike, making it less likely that the necessary actions will be confused.

Recall MastersNew Subaru recall targets Driver Assist System

General Motors Recalls Cadillacs for Brake Pedal Bracket Problems

Detroit, MI — June 27, 2015 — Earlier this month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) posted a recall acknowledgment statement to their website regarding a General Motors recall for 2015 Cadillac ATS and CTS models.

The defect

According to this document, the affected vehicles brake pedal brackets subject to possible fractures, which could potentially fracture during a drive, putting the occupants of the car at risk.

More than 2,160 vehicles may be at risk of this fault, and the official recall period will begin this August, and affects cars that were produced as recently as this March.

As with some of the other recalls MotorSafe has covered, the fix prescribed for this one appears to be relatively simple, since dealers can replace the faulty brake pedal brackets for free.

However, the stakes for replacement are serious, since the issue could make it difficult for drivers to apply the brakes at all should the brackets end up breaking.

An additional recall safety bulletin from the NHTSA goes into further detail on the actions car dealers need to take to make affected Cadillacs safer for use.

“Dealers are to inspect the bracket for fracture or a condition that makes the bracket susceptible to fracture when the brake pedal is depressed,” it reads.

The solution

“If a fracture or such a condition is found, dealers are to replace the brake pedal (including the affected bracket).” The statement also notes that a borescope is needed to help dealers successfully inspect for this problem.

While some auto recalls concern dangerous situations that may not likely happen during normal vehicle operation, this one centers around a feature that could be broken during regular use. In all cases, though, recall accuracy and wide distribution may help to promote proper use reactions.

Check your car’s recall status using MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Recall MastersGeneral Motors Recalls Cadillacs for Brake Pedal Bracket Problems

Takata CEO makes recall statement

Detroit, MI — June 26, 2015 — The New York Times recently reported on statements made by the CEO of Takata, the airbag manufacturer company, on the deaths and recalls surrounding the company’s products. Appearing at a public press conference in Tokyo, company head Shigehisa Takada addressed the investigation into the inflator defects and said that he would not resign as a result of the massive recall.

As readers of this blog will know, the airbag-related recalls have encompassed millions of vehicles so far and include many of the top auto manufacturers operating in the United States. Globally, the company’s products are used in at least 50 million vehicles, with around 34 million recalled because of this action.

However, the company has taken some steps towards a safe future. Discussing what could have caused the inflator explosion within faulty devices, Takada said that the chemical propellant the manufacturer uses is not the source of the problem and is actually reliable.

“We have been working with ammonium nitrate for more than 10 years, and have tested it in a variety of ways,” he said, according to the Times. “As far as I’m concerned, it is safe and reliable.”

In addition, the CBC reports that Takata has moved to a different design for the inflator that will hopefully reduce safety concerns. Specifically, the newer inflators will feature a different figure, as opposed to the design associated with the defects, which the source describes as being “batwing-shaped.”

Manufacturer action is just one part of preparing for a recall, since truly effective responses will be encouraged by dealers and communicated to consumers to reduce any further possible damages and spread word about new preventative changes.

Recall MastersTakata CEO makes recall statement

Multiple problems prompt Chevrolet truck recalls

Detroit, MI — June 24, 2015 — According to multiple sources, General Motors has recalled multiple models of trucks for different reasons. Examining them both, businesses should understand the necessity of recall statement accuracy when seemingly competing information is released at the same time, potentially confusing dealers and consumers.

While GM Authority reports that the manufacturer is recalling 2015 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon trucks for brake-related issues, Consumer Affairs states that some of these same models are also being recalled for misaligned airbag inflators. Though the latter source doesn’t specifically mention manufacturer Takata, whose inflators have been the source of a massive recall effort recently, GM has recalled more than 300,000 vehicles for this particular issue.

The brake issue has affected 14,838 vehicles, and involves air pockets in the front brake calipers that could lead to dangerous brake fluid leaks. The result may be a higher possibility of a crash, and the source states that dealers will inspect and replace the faulty calipers starting July 10.

By comparison, the airbag recall already began in March and concerns a far smaller number of vehicles, just 40, as Consumer Affairs describes. However, the possible effects are more ambiguous, since the faulty inflators could either detach from the steering wheel, explode or simply not function properly on impact. Dealers are also inspecting and replacing the systems in question as needed.

The official number of vehicles affected by the Takata airbag problems seems to be confused. Reuters reported that manufacturers say 16.2 million vehicles could have faulty airbags, while the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has referred to both 30 million and 34 million defective parts from Takata at different times, the source says.

Because of possible conflicting information, consistency and accuracy matters in recall efforts to make a lasting improvement and increase consumer safety.

Recall MastersMultiple problems prompt Chevrolet truck recalls

NHTSA will get help from new safety team [Video]

The government is appointing a Safety Systems Team to help the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to improve implementation and performance.

According to that organization, the new team will consist of three doctors with experience in engineering and aeronautics research. The team is meant to help the administration respond to problems it experienced during the General Motors ignition switch recall.

Anthony Foxx, The U.S. Secretary of Transportation, said that the three professionals it is appointing will help implement improvements to public safety. The three incoming experts are going to act as a supplement to the Administration’s existing staff.

Thank you for watching. We will feature more information about the latest auto recall news, so check back often!

adminNHTSA will get help from new safety team [Video]

Software flaw in electric cars leads to further Fiat Chrysler recall

Detroit, MI — June 22, 2015 — A total of more than 9,000 electric vehicles from Fiat Chrysler have now reportedly been affected by a recall involving electric cars. Earlier this year, the manufacturer took action to address a systems problem that may affect the transmission functionality of Fiat 500 Battery Effective Vehicles (BEV). Transport Evolved reports that the company is expanding the original recall, the enaction of which will take effect “on or around” this upcoming July 5.

Fiat Chrysler has issued similar recalls since the car was first produced in 2013, the source notes. The fault itself traces back to an inconsistency within the vehicles’ speed monitor, which could go unnoticed until too late.

The source cites the official Safety Recall Report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which says the Elective Vehicle Control Unit in some cars may shift into neutral unexpectedly, posing a risk of a crash.

As this document further elaborates, the problem was investigated this April, with errors attributed to flaws within vehicle software.
“Due to software updates, the internal vehicle speed monitor was incorrectly changed to ‘mph’ from ‘kph’ while the System Torque Monitoring Ring (‘STMR’) was not,” the report states. “This created a math error and a subsequent trouble fault code error state due to implausible torque readings.”

The manufacturer’s remedy will include both the voluntary recall and update to software in the affected vehicle systems. A planned dealer notification is scheduled for June 27, and owners will be notified soon.
Ensuring an effective recall, especially one that includes more vehicles than originally planned, lays out a path for dealers and owners to follow as potentially hazardous features are corrected and consumers kept safe, no matter how long the entire process ends up taking.

Recall MastersSoftware flaw in electric cars leads to further Fiat Chrysler recall

NHTSA criticizes Fiat Chrysler recall rates

Detroit, MI — June 19, 2015 — According to the Wall Street Journal, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration came out against Fiat Chrysler this week in a draft document criticizing the manufacturer’s slow recall response rate.

This comes in advance of a planned hearing on July 2 in which the organization will formally assess 22 recalls recently instigated by Chrysler. The defects that caused these recalls include the wide-spread Takata airbag inflator case as well as a rear gas tank issue affecting some Jeeps. In response to the latter issue, regulators have found that just 21 percent of vehicles recalled for this tank were actually fixed afterwards.

While the NHTSA targets the automaker, Fiat Chrysler has responded with claims that a public hearing is not necessary. In a statement excerpted by the Journal, a representative from Chrysler states that the company is dedicated to making the best changes to its policies.

“The initiatives described in our response to NHTSA’s Special Order reflect a deep commitment to thorough investigation and the timely remedy of safety defects,” the unnamed spokesperson said. “While this commitment has helped [the company] achieve positive results, we will not be satisfied until we firmly re-establish the trust our customers place in us.”

The NHTSA announced the hearing back on May 18 and directed a special order at Chrysler in relation to what were then 20 separate defects that had prompted recalls. The NHTSA also stated that other complaints had been traced to the auto producer, including inconsistent repair efforts.

The outcome of a recall depends on proper dealer activity and recall statement communication as well as decisive action from the initial manufacturer. With coordinated, consistent information spread, consumers and dealers will be able to work together to replace faulty parts and make vehicles safer.

Recall MastersNHTSA criticizes Fiat Chrysler recall rates

Honda addresses more than a million vehicles for new recall

Tokyo, Japan — June 18, 2015 — Honda is taking further action with the amount of vehicles it has already recalled over concerns related to rupturing airbag inflators. In an official press release posted earlier this week, the company noted that it will look at 1.39 million passenger-side airbag inflators in different Accord models from the years between 2003 and 2007, as well as Civics from 2001 to 2005.

Although this is not intended to affect the recall for front airbag inflators initiated at the end of last month, the manufacturer emphasized that it is “transitioning” vehicles from the existing recall into the new one. The source says that a total of 2.3 million front airbag inflators now need to be replaced, which the company is doing free of charge.

As this blog noted previously, Honda vehicles were recently linked to another user death from exploding airbag inflator shrapnel, this one the seventh overall. It took place in a Civic driven in Louisiana and have contributed to the growing amount of associated incidents between the massive Takata recall and the manufacturer.

In the statement, Honda mentions the circumstances that led to the new adjusted recall after its initial May 28 limited population recall.

“That announcement, which was based on the specific regional nature of the defect determination made by Takata, indicated that approximately 350,000 additional passenger front airbag inflators would be added to inflators included in an earlier regional action (14V-700),” the statement reads. “However, the NHTSA subsequently interpreted the Takata defect determination as requiring a national recall and directed Honda to conduct a national recall.”

Conducting an accurate recall takes effort on the part of the dealers as well as the manufacturers to perform proper actions and reach individuals.

Recall MastersHonda addresses more than a million vehicles for new recall

Keep up with the rate of new recalls

High recall volumes can be overwhelming, and dealerships need to be ready to respond to large-scale manufacturer actions when they happen.

While other major recalls have occurred in recent years, it’s hard to avoid the aftermath of the Takata airbag inflator scandal. With more than 33 million vehicles affected, the amount of replacing and fixing that dealerships need to do could prove to be a huge strain on resources.

One dealership mentioned by North Carolina-based news source WNCN sees around 60 cars every day for this issue alone.

Managing recalls successfully is important for the customer and dealer. For more information about recent recalls, be sure to check back soon.

adminKeep up with the rate of new recalls