Audi’s May Lose Steering Control

re: NHTSA campaign 20V149000

  • A manufacturing defect in the 2019 Audi Q8 and 2017-2019 Audi Q7 vehicles may cause drivers to lose ability to control steering. 
  • Bolts connecting both the steering gear and the steering shaft may loosen, resulting in a loss of steering control.
  • There have been three reported field incidents surrounding the recall, but no reported injuries. 

Laguna Hills, CA – March 25, 2020 – Volkswagen Group of American, Inc. is recalling 2019 Audi Q8 vehicles and 2017-2019 Audi Q7 vehicles. If you have been experiencing difficulty using your steering wheel on your Audi vehicles then your car may be under this recall. Vehicle owners experiences remain the same across the board – the steering wheel becomes unresponsive during the vehicle’s operation. One Audi Q7 owner in Toronto, outlined his experience when his “steering wheel suddenly stiffened and locked.” In March 2018 he wrote, “Sometime about a 2 months ago, while driving in local streets, my steering wheel suddenly stiffened and locked. Let me explain… imagine your car is off and your steering wheel doesn’t move – the “lock” feeling is kind of like that! The “stiffening” feeling is what leads up to that.”

Don’t worry, there have been no injuries associated with this recall – but if not fixed the problem could be a serious risk to your safety and the safety of other vehicles. Even if you have not had problems with the steering assembly on your vehicle, it would be better safe than sorry to check the VIN of your vehicle for specific recalls. 

Volkswagen first received reports of certain incidents involving the steering wheels back in February 2019. The steering wheel in the incidents reported to Volkswagen seemed to be overly loose, leaving room for excessive play when the drivers tried to turn the wheel. Excessive play here means that regularly a slight turn of the wheel to the right would have turned the vehicle slightly to the right, but now a drastic turn of the steering wheel will only slightly turn the vehicle in that direction. Although this is the first incident that Volkswagen chose to report to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), it seems that Audi’s have been having a couple of problems before that. In 2006, a customer in Mexico reported that their Audi A6 had a few malfunctions with the steering wheel’s more technical features. All buttons on the steering wheel, including volume control and the car horn, stopped working entirely. Ten years later, another customer experienced the same problem, writing in the online forum Audizine, “My steering wheel controls such as the volume control and track change function don’t work.” 2016 seemed to be a year filled with steering wheel issues for Audi Q7 and Q8 models, for multiple other owners wrote to online forums complaining of “hard/stiff steering”. This correlates more to what March 9, 2020’s recall is referring to – a bolt that was not tightened enough causing the steering to either stiffen up or become too loose. Either way, if your vehicle is affected Volkswagen and Audi will fix your Audi vehicle free of charge.

The best steps forward are to check motorsafety.org for any other repairs that may be needed on your Audi Q8 and Audi Q7 vehicles. This is not the first recall for this vehicle. Just last year Audi Q8 vehicles were also recalled due to another problem with suspension and vehicle steering. However, most Audi recalls in the past several years have been unrelated to steering issues. Kelly Blue Book wrote that most Audis in the recent past have been “recalled for Violations of the EPA Clean Air Act over excessive diesel emissions, while others have been recalled for faulty Takata airbag inflators.” Although Audi has issued recalls on previous vehicles they are mostly unrelated to the steering mechanism. If you would like to check the specifics of recalls on your vehicle, use your VIN number and motorsafety.org will be able to find all recalls relating to your car.

For more information on this or other recalls past or present, visit MotorSafety.org.

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About MotorSafety.org

MotorSafety.org is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to vehicle safety and assisting consumers with the identification and resolution of vehicle manufacturing recalls and defects. Through education, awareness, government relations, repair facility referrals and strategic partnerships, MotorSafety.org hopes to remove every unsafe vehicle from the road, facilitate its proper repair, and ensure its prompt return to the owner once the vehicle has met the required safety and performance standards. For more information about MotorSafety.org, please email support@motorsafety.org.

Marshall EarleyAudi’s May Lose Steering Control

Infiniti Rear Seat Belts May Not Lock

re: NHTSA campaign 20V145000

  • 2020 Infiniti Q60 vehicles rear seat belt assemblies may not lock properly in the event of a crash. 
  • The approximate number of affected Infiniti vehicles is 450, but could be higher as the specifics of the recall are still under investigation. 
  • There have been no reported cases or injuries reports to Nissan North America, Inc.

Laguna Hills, CA – March 16, 2020 – Nissan North America, Inc. (Nissan) is recalling certain 2020 Infiniti Q60 vehicles that could be installed with a rear seat belt assembly that will not lock properly in the event of a crash. If the rear seat belt mechanism does not properly restraint the occupant, this could lead to a serious risk of injury. 

The approximate number of affected vehicles is 450.

The Defect:

Nissan North America is recalling 2020 Infiniti Q60 vehicles that are equipped with rear seat belt assemblies with a dual-mode locking mechanism that will not properly restrain the vehicle’s occupant during a crash. The original rear seat belt assemblies were supplied by Joyson Safety Symptoms (JSS). During the manufacturing of these rear seat belts with dual locking mechanisms, a specific spring that is installed inside the webbing sensor could be placed incorrectly. If the spring is placed incorrectly in the dual locking mechanism (consisting of the webbing sensor and a G-sensor) then the spring could possibly inhibit other functions of the webbing sensor, causing the locking mechanism to malfunction. Joyson Safety Systems has identified 450 possible rear seat belt assemblies that could have been installed in a number of Infiniti Q60 vehicles.


In September 2019, JSS notified Nissan of the possible malfunction involving the rear seat belt assemblies and the dual-locking mechanism webbing sensor. Nissan did not see probable cause as to alert the public of risk, citing that the webbing sensor was a secondary mechanism to the G-sensor in the dual-locking mechanisms. Nissan conducted an internal report to investigate the compliance with FMVSS and found that the assessed issue brought to their attention by JSS was not of comparable risk to safety. December 2019 through February 2020, Nissan decided to review reports surrounding other Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) decisions to recall their vehicles that were installed with faulty seat belt mechanisms. On February 28, 2020 , JSS alerted Nissan of its decision, after careful monitoring of other OEM defect reports, to submit a formal Defect Information Report. On March 9, 2020 Nissan decided to conduct a voluntary recall of the rear seat belt assemblies with dual-locking mechanisms provided by JSS. Nissan will notify vehicle owners asking them to bring their vehicle into any Nissan or Infiniti dealership for inspection of the rear seat belt dual-locking mechanism. If the assembly needs to be replaced it will be done free of charge. If vehicle owners have any questions they are welcome to call Nissan customer service at 1 (800) 647-7261.

For more information on this or other recalls past or present, visit MotorSafety.org.

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About MotorSafety.org

MotorSafety.org is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to vehicle safety and assisting consumers with the identification and resolution of vehicle manufacturing recalls and defects. Through education, awareness, government relations, repair facility referrals and strategic partnerships, MotorSafety.org hopes to remove every unsafe vehicle from the road, facilitate its proper repair, and ensure its prompt return to the owner once the vehicle has met the required safety and performance standards. For more information about MotorSafety.org, please email support@motorsafety.org.

Marshall EarleyInfiniti Rear Seat Belts May Not Lock

Jeep Recalls 33,000+ Wranglers and Gladiators Due to Fire Risk

re: NHTSA campaign 20V124000

Laguna Hills, CA – March 3, 2020 – Jeep recalls all 2018-2020 manual transmission Wranglers and 2020 manual transmission Gladiators due to a clutch issue. Gladiator owners may be at particular risk since Jeep has also issued a recall on 2020 models for a rear driveshaft installation error. The clutch recall affects 33,237 vehicles and includes a stop sell order to dealerships, halting sales pending a repair for the issue.

The Signs of a Failing Clutch Pressure Plate

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles first became aware of a potential safety issue in late 2019. Customer reports indicated early warning signs like extra movement in the clutch pedal and a burning smell. Any change in the feel of the clutch pedal while driving can be an indicator of future trouble.

Driving Risks

Too much friction between the pressure plate and the clutch can cause the plate to fracture, potentially releasing hot metal pieces into the engine and undercarriage. If those pieces hit the gas tank, a sudden fire is possible. Other risks include dropping debris on the road and a sudden loss of power at the wheel, which increases the risk of a crash.

Currently, this defect has resulted in one minor injury and 35 warranty claims related to clutch failure, according to the NHTSA Safety Recall Report. To date, the default has caused no known traffic accidents.

Manufacturer Policies to Repair Recalled Vehicles

FCA US has policies in place for car owners that may have paid for repairs out of pocket. Reimbursement is typically available when the vehicle owner submits a copy of the repair receipt for any repairs later subject to a recall. FCA US has a history of slow repairs and delayed responses to repair reports, but a $105M fine issued in 2015 has sped up the repair cycle.

Scheduling a Repair

Any Jeep-certified service center can complete repairs. There is no charge for service on Chrysler recalls. Prevent a Jeep Wrangler fire and find out if your vehicle is part of the recall at MotorSafety.org.

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About MotorSafety.org

MotorSafety.org is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to vehicle safety and assisting consumers with the identification and resolution of vehicle manufacturing recalls and defects. Through education, awareness, government relations, repair facility referrals and strategic partnerships, MotorSafety.org hopes to remove every unsafe vehicle from the road, facilitate its proper repair, and ensure its prompt return to the owner once the vehicle has met the required safety and performance standards. For more information about MotorSafety.org, please email support@motorsafety.org.

Marshall EarleyJeep Recalls 33,000+ Wranglers and Gladiators Due to Fire Risk

Blower Motor Used to Replace Original in Ford Ranger’s May Short

re: NHTSA campaign 20V137000

Laguna Hills, CA – March 9, 2020 – Replacement blower motors installed in 2019 Ford Ranger vehicles may electrically short and increase the risk of vehicle fire.

The potential number of affected vehicles is 5,384.

The Defect:

Ford Motor Company (Ford) is recalling certain 2019 Ford Ranger vehicles that had been previously replaced with a new blower motor to comply with recall 19V-726. The replacement HVAC (Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning) blower motor may be installed with a faulty clearance area that sits between an electrical terminal and the conductive plate at the base of the motor. If the clearance area is improperly assembled this will result in a electrical short that could cause an internal engine fire. The original dates of replacement in compliance with recall 19V-726 was October 9, 2019 through November 22, 2019 – any 2019 Rangers replacement with HVAC motors during this period are at higher risk for this particular recall.

On October 9, 2019, Field Service Action 19S34 was approved in regards to 2019 Ford Ranger vehicles overheating, melting or smoking due to HVAC (Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning) blower motors that did not function properly. The Field Service Action revealed to the Ford Action Committee that the recalled blower motors were assembled and stamped with a build date code of June 14, 2019 through September 22, 2019. On October 30, 2019, a Ford dealership received a replacement blower motor with a suspect build date code. This was followed by five other manufacturers and dealerships reporting that they had also received blow motors with suspect build date codes. Ford decided to investigate, and a Tier 2 supplier found that 300 blower motors that were built within the suspect dates were not properly quarantined and shipped to a Tier 1 supplier then distributed among dealers. This information was brought to the Ford Critical Concern Review Group (CCRG) who decided on November 5, 2019 to launch a campaign whose efforts would help to locate all of the distributed blower motors. By February 21, 2020 93 of the suspected 300 blower motors had been located. Ford Motors decided to test approximately 30 of the found 93 blower motors for electrical continuity issues. Of the 30 tests, five blower motors indicated an improper space between one electrical conduit and the electrical conductive base plate installed in the motor. After the results of these tests were finalized Ford decided to issue a field action and part recall for blower motors used to replace previously recalled motors under FSA 19S34. The FSA approval dates of the suspected blower motors installation is between October 9, 2019 through November 22, 2019.

Solution:

Any owners whose 2019 Ford Rangers HVAC blower motors were repaired under FSA 19S34 from October 9, 2019 through November 22, 2019 will be notified by mail as soon as possible. Ford will instruct the owners to bring their vehicle into a Ford or Lincoln dealerships to have the HVAC blower motor build date code inspected. If the build date code is within the timeframe that the recalled motors were shipped out then the HVAC motor will be replaced, free of charge. Vehicle owners with further questions should contact Ford Customer Service at 1 (800) 392-3673.

For more information on this or other recalls past or present, visit MotorSafety.org.

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About MotorSafety.org

MotorSafety.org is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to vehicle safety and assisting consumers with the identification and resolution of vehicle manufacturing recalls and defects. Through education, awareness, government relations, repair facility referrals and strategic partnerships, MotorSafety.org hopes to remove every unsafe vehicle from the road, facilitate its proper repair, and ensure its prompt return to the owner once the vehicle has met the required safety and performance standards. For more information about MotorSafety.org, please email support@motorsafety.org.

Marshall EarleyBlower Motor Used to Replace Original in Ford Ranger’s May Short