Recall Delay Fines Could Increase Under New Legislation

Washington, D.C. — September 30, 2015 — It’s already crucial for auto manufacturers to conduct recalls properly and follow government guidelines. However, legislation announced earlier this month revealed possible future penalties for manufacturers that are even higher.

According to the Detroit News, maximum fines for delayed recalls under this new plan would increase to $70 million. The same bill would come with other related provisions that would potentially raise the safety budget of that National Highway Traffic Safety Administration by more than $14 million within the next five years.

Preparing for these possible changes could require efforts on the part of manufacturers to pay even closer attention to the effectiveness of their recalls. Likewise, dealers can invest in recall services that communicate important issues to the customer base quickly.

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Recall MastersRecall Delay Fines Could Increase Under New Legislation

BMW Recalls Mini Coopers For Impact Risk

Washington, D.C. — September 29, 2015 — More than 30,000 MINI Coopers will potentially be affected by a recent recall. Earlier this month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration discovered that some MINI Coopers do not meet government structural regulations established by the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard. Specifically, the low side impact rating in these cars would put rear seat passengers in danger. The recall will officially start on September 12.

The affected vehicles have model years between 2014 and 2015. Fixing this problem will involve installing special material into the exterior of the vehicle to absorb the shock of collision. According to the NHTSA, some vehicles will also receive a small foam patch as part of the update.

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Recall MastersBMW Recalls Mini Coopers For Impact Risk

Volkswagen vehicles recalled for non-compliant software [Video]

According to the government, Volkswagen has used software to fool emissions standards. Now, the company is issuing a significant recall for more than 480,000 vehicles.

After pressure from the Environmental Protection Agency, the manufacturer reportedly revealed that the targeted vehicles contain software that presents false emissions information. The issue specifically applies to diesel engines, which have higher emissions levels than previously denoted. The software is known as a defeat device, and it constitutes a violation of the Clean Air Act.

In response to this information, the company is working with the EPA as the agency continues its investigations. Volkswagen itself is launching its own investigation, as well as ceasing the sale of diesel cars from the current and next model years. The company could face millions of dollars in fines as a result.

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adminVolkswagen vehicles recalled for non-compliant software [Video]

Ice Storms Lead to Multiple Recalls in Canada

Detroit, MI — September 25, 2015 — Sometimes, the environment can lead to a car recall instead of a manufacturing fault.

The CBC recently reported on a recall affecting nearly 3,000 cars, including BMW’s and Mini’s produce for model years 2014 and 2015. The source traces this action to ice storms from February that may have corroded the steering rack, creating a possible risk for fire in these affected vehicles.

Transport Canada was still developing a remedy plan as of August 4, but the source noted that the vehicles were specifically parked in Halifax when the storms hit, leaving them more vulnerable to water and salt damage. The vehicles were not just left exposed to the elements, but actually frozen, with ice attaching itself to the vehicles during this time. The BMWs might also be more likely to crash as a result of this corrosion, according to Global News.

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Recall MastersIce Storms Lead to Multiple Recalls in Canada

Second round of Nissan recalls could be forthcoming [Video]

According to the New York Times, 990,000 Nissan vehicles could be subject to a new round of recalls for an unresolved airbag deployment issue. Back in 2014, the manufacturer recalled several brands of vehicles, including Altima, Pathfinder and Infiniti JX35, to correct a systems defect that would prevent an airbag from releasing in the passenger seat during an accident.

While a Nissan spokesman stated that the vehicles have been fixed, more than 1,000 complaints have been sent to the federal government claiming that the problem persists. The source speculates that the company may have to respond more thoroughly with a new recall that permanently fixes the vehicles.

Nissan is also mitigating another recall at the same time which involves nearly 300,000 Versa and Versa note autos. This action pertains to a rare but concerning console trim panel problem that could catch the shoes of drivers in mid-operation.

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adminSecond round of Nissan recalls could be forthcoming [Video]

Nissan Investigating Maxima Fuel Sending Units

Detroit, MI — September 24, 2015 — It hasn’t released a recall notification yet, but Nissan is recalling thousands of 2016 Maximas for fuel system concerns.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the manufacturer believes as many as 5,458 vehicles may be affected. Although investigations are still ongoing, the recall concerns loose fuel sending units that have been improperly sealed, as well as o-rings that don’t match. The company has placed a quality assurance hold on the suspected models.

In these vehicles, the defective systems are reportedly more likely to rupture during a crash, leaking fuel and posing a fire hazard to drivers and passengers. As of July 31, Nissan had yet to develop a remedy but announced its intention to inform consumers as early as possible.

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Recall MastersNissan Investigating Maxima Fuel Sending Units

Are Cyber-Hacks A New Concern For Vehicles?

Detroit, MI — September 23, 2015 — Chrysler recently recalled more than 1 million vehicles over cybersecurity concerns. With so much new technology going into our cars, does this signify a new source of possible recalls?

Although the manufacturer has taken steps to reduce the possible damage this defect could cause, it has brought attention to a modern kind of threat. This danger in particular is problematic for two reasons: it stems from software issues that were present before it was even released, and it could have allowed hackers from anywhere to access important functions like steering within the target vehicle.

There is a silver lining to this discovery, at least for Chrysler customers: the fix is easy enough, thanks to a USB drive provided by the manufacturer. But even if the company successfully remedies this problem, others need to be ready for the implications.

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Recall MastersAre Cyber-Hacks A New Concern For Vehicles?

GM Issues Cadillac Recall For Defroster Risk

Detroit, MI — September 22, 2015 — A new recall action centers around more than 120,000 Cadillacs at risk of fire damage.

According to the Associated Press, there have been no reports of injuries connected to this issue, but four documented instances of a fire starting in these vehicles after a window defroster overheated.

The defect

In total, the recall concerns approximately 97,000 Cadillac ATS vehicles in the United States and 24,000 elsewhere. Fewer than 1 percent of the vehicle population are considered vulnerable,  and the defect has been localized in the “driver’s side rear pillar,” as the source describes.

Timeline of events

Although the models span three years, the manufacturer said that vehicles produced before September 2 are the only ones at risk.

The article describes the source of the possible fires, which could occur after defroster units for the rear windows are used too much. Fortunately, the fix is described as being simple and will not interfere with standard operation once implemented.

The solution

“Dealers will update climate control software to remove a function that automatically turns the defroster on,” the article states. “Drivers will still be able to turn on the defroster manually.”

Automotive News provides additional context for this action, stating that ATS sales have dropped as of last month, down 13 percent when compared to the previous year.

This decline seems to parallel the growth in recall actions regarding the brand, since this most recent one also follows a pair of Cadillac recalls from the same manufacturer for problems with Cadillac sedan sunroofs.

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

adminGM Issues Cadillac Recall For Defroster Risk

More Than 34 Million Cars Recalled In First Half of 2015

Detroit, MI — September 20, 2015 — According to the Wall Street Journal, more than 34 million vehicles have been recalled by manufacturers so far this year. The high number stems from recent vehicle concerns that have affected significant names like Fiat Chrysler and General Motors.

The only time when this number was surpassed in nearly 50 years was 2014, which saw roughly 15 million more vehicles recalled within the same amount of time. Before that, the highest amount of vehicles recalled between January and June was in 1981, largely in response to actions from Ford.

The most recent figures are reportedly connected to a wealth of different recall issues. These include not just the Takata air bag recall, itself the largest in American history, but concerns over cybersecurity in vehicles as well.

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Recall MastersMore Than 34 Million Cars Recalled In First Half of 2015

New GM recall targets more than 73,000 Chevrolets

Detroit, MI — September 19, 2015 — Owners of 2010 Chevrolet Cobalts need to be aware of possible defects that may prevent air bag deployment and pose a risk to drivers. According to the Associated Press, General Motors is recalling more than 73,000 vehicles because of this danger, after receiving word of an injury and crash that may be related to this fault. Most of the cars—59,474 to be exact— are in the United States, while 13,950 are in Canada, spreading out the regions where owners might be affected.

The Detroit News has additional details about the recall, including the mechanics behind the wiring problem that keeps the airbag from being released. As this source describes it, the sensor wire harness in the driver side door is to blame. Fortunately, drivers can rely on the vehicle alert system for warning when the air bag isn't working properly.

"When improperly routed, the window regulator could contact the harness when the window is fully lowered and over time chafe the harness insulation," the source says. "That could result in a short circuit preventing the driver side roof rail air bag from deploying during a crash. Dealers will inspect all suspect vehicles and any found with the condition will be repaired."

As the source goes on to note, this is similar to other recent air bag system recalls, some of which have involved wiring problems. This comes in addition to the Takata recall, which, even though it concerns a completely different type of fault and danger to the driver, also concerns problems that will limit airbag effectiveness.

adminNew GM recall targets more than 73,000 Chevrolets