Some 2016 Hyundai Tucson trailers may have turn signal problems [Video]

Fountain Valley, CA — April 29, 2016 — Some SUV trailer turn signal lights may be in trouble, according to a recent Hyundai recall. Last month, the manufacturer targeted thousands of Tucson vehicles produced within the last two years for issues that could affect drivers with trailers.

The problem comes from the trailer hitch wiring harnesses. These products, from Mobis Part America, may interfere with the turn signals used in trailers. Drivers could find that these signals either stay on for too long or turn off entirely. Either way, the problem could represent a safety violation.

Owners and dealers were both notified on March 6. Dealers were instructed to fix this difficulty by updating affected harnesses.

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Volkswagen Recalls Hit Snag in Europe

Hamburg, Germany — April 28, 2016 — Reuters recently reported on the new obstacle keeping Volkswagen’s German recalls from progressing. The manufacturer is still trying to fix around 2.5 million cars in that country alone this year, and needs to reconsider its approach in the wake of a failed software update. These vehicles were originally altered to fool emissions detection systems: The source states that the intended patch had actually raised fuel consumption levels.

This subsection of the larger emissions-related recall affects 160,000 vehicles, which are currently on hold as the company tries something else. Automotive News Europe noted that the rise might not be the official reason for the recall, as an unnamed representative said that notion wasn’t confirmed. “We have to guarantee that noise and especially CO2 emissions are exactly the same as before the fix,” this person said, referring to the car company’s continuing work.

Autocar added that the German Federal Motor Transport Authority is scheduled to release a report on the diesel vehicle scandal later this month. The authority has confirmed that Volkswagen did install the cheat in its vehicles, but concluded that other car companies accused of the same action, including BMW, are not guilty. This organization will continue its investigations as the United States develops its own way to manage the compromised autos.

The current efforts to recall and update these vehicles have been burdened by other recent unrelated Volkswagen recalls. These include a separate problem affecting thousands of American Passat vehicles, which could suddenly stop after a short circuit.

A different Reuters article cited this incident, noting that the included vehicles were produced “between 2012 and 2014.” Within the same week, Volkwagen also recalled around 5,600 e-Golf cars to keep them from suddenly stalling due to power problems as well.

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FCA Recalls Vehicles with Bad Brake Calipers [Video]

Detroit, MI — April 27, 2016 — Some Fiat Chrysler vehicles may have faulty brake calipers, according to a new recall. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began this month with reports on this latest action.

The recall includes more than 14,700 SUVs from the 2015 and 2016 model years. The left front caliper in these vehicles can fracture, the source said, making it harder for drivers to stop quickly. This can also lead to loss of brake fluid.

The manufacturer did not include a recall schedule in the original March 23 report. However, it did state that the remedy will replace calipers that may be made of weak material. The recall affects both Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango vehicles.

You can read more about Jeep and Chrysler recalls on our blog. Check out out archives for other stories involving this manufacturer. Thanks for watching!

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Volkswagen Passat Recalls Concern Possible Fires

Auburn Hills, MI — April 26, 2016 — In an action unrelated to previous diesel emissions Volkswagen recalls, the manufacturer is focusing on vehicles with a potential underbody fire risk. Though the chances of this happening may be rare, the company addressed this problem in a statement published on Autoblog. This source stated that a group of 91,000 Passats could gradually suffer underbody sensor corrosion.

Over time, exposure to water could gradually wear down the sensor connectors, eventually triggering a short that overheats the sensor. The statement clarified that the affected autos bear the 2012, 2013 and 2014 model years. Corrosion would be possible due to bad wire seals. As of March 24, no notification schedule was given.

In addition, a Part 573 Safety Recall report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration listed the series of events that led to this recall. Last November, “the production plant reported events with overheated electrical connectors and isolated underbody vehicle fires to Volkswagen’s product safety committee. Additional analysis of detailed cause was assigned,” before further action was taken, the report stated.

Two months later,the company began a field survey before the defect was officially determined on March 16. The impacted vehicles do have diesel engines, even though this case does not involve the “cheats” established in other recalled Volkswagens that have triggered international concern.

To remedy this issue, dealers will inspect and replace the connector. Owners might see an MIL indicator if the issue is present in their vehicle, and could use this as a sign to take action. The engine associated with the possible seal failure has reportedly been discontinued, but the replacement connectors will have well-seated seals that prevent the potentially dangerous wear in the older ones. No component manufacturer was reported.

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Steering Assist Failure Leads to Hyundai Sonata Recall

Fountain Valley, CA — April 25, 2016 — Hyundai Motor America is recalling 173,000 Sonata sedans produced between 2009 and 2010, all with the 2011 model year. The cause comes from power steering concerns which could alter the driver’s steering ability while the car is in motion. Though the issue won’t completely stop steering control, it will shut off the assist in some cases, forcing drivers to put more effort into manning the vehicle.

If the circuit board connected to the affected autos’ electronic power steering is damaged, drivers may unexpectedly have to work harder. The Part 573 Safety Recall Report for this problem described the way electronic power steering systems receive multiple inputs from the vehicle, including steering wheel torque and position data. Every owner of a potentially affected vehicle will be instructed to seek out a dealer for EPS replacement.

Drivers should pay attention to the instrument warning lights and specifically look for the red EPS signal. Although the report was submitted on March 31, the planned dealer and owner notification date isn’t until May 31. According to an accompanying vehicle recall chronology, the first investigations date back to last year.

“The investigation revealed the manufacturing process for the printed circuit board (PCB) in the EPS Control Unit was modified in October, 2010 by revising the protective coating to the circuit board to help improve the PCB’s resistance to potential environmental effects,” it said.

Last month, investigators from Korea came to the U.S. to observe possible steering problems in these vehicles: Mobis, the listed component supplier, is based in Korea. As the chronology stated, the recall grew out of these investigations. The power steering system has been a part of the Sonata since it was introduced to the U.S. market in 2009, seven years before the current Hyundai recalls.

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New Fatality Found in Takata Airbag Inflator Case

Fort Bend County, TX — April 20, 2016 — Another fatality is now attributed to the dangerous airbag inflators involved in the massive Takata airbag recalls. According to Reuters, systems in a 2002 vehicle led to a driver death from a ruptured air bag. While a representative of the manufacturer said that the company is “very motivated” in repairing the recalled vehicles, this death marks the tenth in the United States. All but one of these fatal accidents have occurred in Honda vehicles.

As a result of this latest news, a Florida senator, Bill Nelson, issued a statement for all of the manufacturers involved in the recall “to intensify and expand their outreach to affected vehicle owners” as the efforts continue, Reuters noted. So far, 14 manufacturers have taken part in the large recall effort, with around a third of recalled inflators replaced. The government continues to push for a full completion rate as more vehicles are added to the recall numbers.

Despite this, Honda has recently highlighted its own safety ranking in a press release. Four 2016 Honda models placed on the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s highest safety ranking as “top safety picks.”

American Honda Motor Company Executive Vice President John Mendel addressed the company’s increased focus on newer safety features in the statement as well.

“The fundamental notion of vehicle safety is evolving and with technologies like some of those in Honda Sensing and AcuraWatch, we are pursuing our vision to reduce and, ultimately, to eliminate vehicle collisions,” he said. “This is one of our biggest challenges and an essential element of our commitment to making products that improve the lives of people.”

The representative Reuters quoted added that Honda has sent 10 million mailers as part of its recall awareness campaign.

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Mercedes-Benz Recalls Unpredictable Vehicles

Montvale, NJ — April 19, 2016 — A single defect in hundreds of Mercedes-Benz vehicles could impact drivers in harmful ways. According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report, 888 Mercedes-Benz vehicles may have steering column wiring harness issues that could manifest in several different unwanted situations: the document lists turn signal failure, airbag deployment and engine stalling as possible consequences of this problem.

This same report noted that the early examples of this issue were noticed last August. The recall concerns Mercedes-Benz GLC 300 and GLC-300 4-matic vehicles produced between June, July and November 2015. While a driver might get warning indicators in the case of some of these issues , the notice specifically said that airbag deployment would not come with a warning.

“Authorized Mercedes-Benz dealers will check the wiring harnesses on the affected vehicles and repair it, if necessary, and the wiring harness will be correctly routed,” the notice asserted. It also stated that the component supplier, DR XLMAIER Group, began “immediate countermeasures” including “starting on-site training at the wiring harness manufacturing plant” and “conducting specific checks for correct assembly.” This took place in August 2015, a day after the defect was discovered at the plant itself.

Left Lane News reported on a different Mercedes-Benz recall in March, this one concerning the C300, which could accidentally eject its sunroof while the vehicle is in motion. This posed an obvious safety threat, but the recall only affected 53 vehicles in the United States, and the problem seemed to be easily remedied with the right bonding and glass panel attached. The source also said that the problem was caused by improper labeling, in which panels were installed in cars before they had received the right priming.

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Three Toyota Brands Featured in Stability Recall

Torrance, CA — April 18, 2016 — Toyota’s new recall will address problems in more than 12,800 vehicles, as the company looks to correct brake actuator assemblies in the affected units. Owners can expect a first-class mail notification, and dealers should be prepared to inspect the suspect vehicles for serial numbers. Because the possibly faulty system could affect multiple functions, solving the problem may restore multiple functions to drivers, including vehicle stability and traction control.

All of the recalled vehicles are from the 2016 model year: they include the RAV4, RX350 and ES350. According to a press release from the company, distributed through Autoblog, the affected vehicles might prove unstable to a hazardous extent. The actuator represents a major single point where multiple systems can be affected all at once.

“There is a possibility that a component inside the actuator could have been damaged during manufacturing, preventing the actuator from operating properly,” the statement read. “This could cause a loss of vehicle stability control, increasing the risk of crash.” A company representative quoted by the source denied the chance to explain whether or not there were any incidents connected to this recall. reported on a different recall from earlier this year also involving the RAV4. In this effort, the model years showed greater range, from 2006 to 2014. Car occupants were in danger from lap belts that could separate during a crash, due to a seat belt defect.

Although this earlier recall only included two models, the RAV4 and the RAV4EV, the volume of vehicles was greater, accounting for more than 1 million. The source stated that dealers would solve this issue by placing resin covers on the seat cushion frames.

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Subaru Vehicles from 2015 and 2016 Could Suddenly Stall

Cherry Hill, NJ — April 15, 2016 — Both Subaru Forester and WRX vehicles are part of a recent recall action. According to an official report, the automaker believes some of these units with the 2015 and 2016 model years were assembled with the wrong material in the “turbocharger air intake duct.” As a result, the company is recalling 18,200 vehicles which may contain components from the DaikyoNishikawa Corporation. A crack in this duct could possibly stall the vehicle.

The source traced the first report of a related stall to December 2015. Though this problem could lead to a sudden, unexpected loss of power, there are some possible warnings: drivers may want to look for the “Check Engine” light, as well as indicators of lower engine power or a “rough idle.”

As the report further described, the parts causing the recall contain a specific lot number that factors into the planned remedy.

“Subaru will inspect the lot number molded on the engine turbocharger air intake duct to determine if it was produced with incorrect material,” the source said. “If a specific lot number is found, the duct will be replaced. If a different lot number is found, replacement is not necessary.”

A press release from the company republished in Autoblog stated that there was no official recall schedule released as of March 21. However, the March 17 Part 573 report claimed that the planned dealer recall date was March 21.

In a separate repair procedure document, the same company noted that only some of the vehicles in the Subaru recalls will require a full replacement. Specifically, the repair order only applies to ducts produced in April 2015. Those that were built on this date will require three separate parts: the air intake duct, gasket and O ring.

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NHTSA Continues Focus on Safety in Takata Recalls

Washington, DC — April 14, 2016 — With reviews continuing in the Takata airbag recalls, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced that it’s concentrating on proper safety enforcement. Bloomberg quoted a spokesman from the organization, Bryan Thomas, who confirmed the main mission of the current recall efforts.

Even though the cost of the expansive airbag inflator recall may reach as high as $24 billion, the NHTSA isn’t going to spare Takata just because the cost turns out to be this great, according to this source. This is important as the recalls play out against a background of Takata’s decreasing market value. Since Takata still has more than three years to determine the inflator’s “root cause,” the regulator’s bigger vision of the business’ fate may dictate how it is able to respond to future challenges.

“NHTSA makes recall determinations based on safety, and safety alone,” Thomas said. “The agency will take all appropriate actions to make sure air bags in Americans’ vehicles are safe.”

Takata has had other issues related to this recall plague its attempts to oversee completion. According to NHTSA data quoted by Reuters, roughly 7.5 million of around 29 million inflators were repaired as of March 11. The NHTSA has issued a 2018 deadline for the majority of the repairs. In the meantime, the several automakers affected by the defect are expected to have enough parts to conduct necessary replacements.

Furthermore, recent expansions to existing recalls have made the repair efforts difficult, as major manufacturers like Ford and BMW now have more units to deal with. The latter reportedly has a completion rate under 2 percent, while Mazda’s completion rate hangs under 6 percent.

The New York Times stated in January that 10 deaths were traced back to the Takata inflator rupture issues.

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