BMW Recalls 2018 Hybrid Electric Vehicles That Could Lose Power While Driving

Laguna Hills, CA – May 17, 2019 – BMW North America is recalling certain 2018 i3 BEV and i3 REx hybrid electric vehicles. A defective electronic module could shut down the high-voltage electrical power supply. If this happens while driving solely on electricity, without gasoline in the tank as a fallback, the car would lose power and stop unexpectedly, potentially causing a crash. As many as 159 vehicles could be affected by this issue.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this particular recall, a circuit board problem within the affected vehicles’ electronic module could shut down the supply of electrical power. This would result in a loss of propulsion, increasing the risk of an accident.

Timeline of Events

BMW first learned in September 2018 of a number of incidents involving high-voltage electrical power loss on Model Year 2018 BMW i3 vehicles, with additional reports of the error continuing to surface over the next few months. Despite an initial review after the first cases, the origin of the power problem was not determined.

Additional field incidents occurred in early 2019, leading to further reviews that included the automaker’s supplier and subcontractor. On April 2, BMW learned from its supplier that the electronic modules in question had not been produced to specifications. The printed circuit boards had not been adequately cleaned according to the process laid out by the automaker.

BMW reviewed the supplier’s records to ascertain the time period during which the problem had occurred, as well as the number of affected vehicles. The automaker then decided April 10 to conduct a voluntary safety recall. As of that date, BMW had not received any reports of accidents or injuries related to this issue.

The Solution

The recall will begin June 7. BMW will notify owners of the affected vehicles, and dealers will replace the defective electronic module at no cost.

Owners may contact BMW customer service at 1-800-525-7417. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to the www.safercar.gov website. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V-310.

Sean ReyesBMW Recalls 2018 Hybrid Electric Vehicles That Could Lose Power While Driving

Ford Transit Shuttle Vans Recalled For Rear Seat Defect

Laguna Hills, CA – May 17, 2019 – Waldoch Crafts is recalling certain 2018 Ford Transit Shuttle Vans equipped with Freedman GO-ES Foldaway Seats. The rear seat cushion may not stay locked in place when the vehicle is carrying a heavy load, such as when a sudden stop occurs, or during a crash. As many as 15 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this issue, the affected Ford Transit vehicles, which were modified by Waldoch Crafts, contained rear foldaway seats that are designed to rotate from the stowed position to the upright one. Because of a manufacturing defect, the seat cushions may not remain locked in place in certain situations, such as when an unexpected stop occurs, or during a crash. In the event of an accident, there is a greater likelihood of injury for rear seat passengers. 

Description of Cause

According to the manufacturer, if the back frame weldment is too narrow and it is fastened to the seat base weldment, this could potentially result in a deformation of the dump mechanism. As a result, this defect would cause the seat back cushion locking module to malfunction under certain conditions. If the seat back does not lock correctly, shuttle van passengers could suddenly find themselves thrown backwards into a reclining position, increasing the chance of injury.  

The Solution

A schedule for formal notification of the recall has not been finalized yet. The manufacturer is still working on a repair solution for the problem, and will contact owners when that becomes available.

Owners may contact Waldoch customer service at 1-651-464-3215. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to the www.safercar.gov website. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V-252.

Sean ReyesFord Transit Shuttle Vans Recalled For Rear Seat Defect

Jeep Wranglers Recalled Due To Safety Defect

Laguna Hills, CA – May 16, 2019 – Erwin Hymer Group USA, doing business as American Fastbacks, is recalling 2018 Badlands Edition Jeep Wranglers equipped with roof top tents. The tent cover may break or crack, which could result in it coming loose from the vehicle while it is moving. As many as 94 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this recall action, the affected 2018 Jeep Wrangler vehicles have a roof top tent installed in which the top cover may break or crack under extreme weather conditions. As a result, the cover could detach from the vehicle. If this were to happen while the vehicle is moving, it could create a road hazard, increasing the chance of a crash.

Timeline of Events

American Fastbacks first learned of the problem in November 2018, when dealerships in the Midwest reported that covers on the Wrangler roof top tents were cracking due to extreme cold weather. The company, believing it was a quality control defect, started looking for a new supplier.

Additional complaints were received in February 2019, followed by a dealer report April 17 that the roof top cracking was not a cosmetic issue, but rather one that posed a significant safety concern.

American Fastbacks had already instituted an earlier recall of the affected vehicles for another issue. After discussion of the new problem with the NHTSA, the company decided to announce a separate recall for the roof top tent defect.

The Solution

The recall will begin in May 2019. A solution to the roof-cover defect is still under development.

Owners may contact American Fastbacks customer service at 1-844-533-7997 extension 301. Owners should be aware that vehicles in this recall are also included in recall 19V-190. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V-320.

Sean ReyesJeep Wranglers Recalled Due To Safety Defect

BMW Recalls 2018 Vehicles With Instrument Cluster And Air Bag Issues

Laguna Hills, CA – May 16, 2019 – BMW is recalling certain 2019 X3 sDrive30i, X3 xDrive30i, X3 M40i and X4 M40i vehicles because of air bags that may not function, as the result of an instrument panel defect. As many as 50 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this issue, the affected vehicles are equipped with an instrument panel assembly that may have been improperly manufactured. The errors of this particular flaw pertain to the front passenger air bag and could adversely affect its deployment. If the air bag does not operate properly during a crash, there is a significantly increased risk of injury for the passenger in the front seat.

Timeline of Events

BMW learned from its supplier on March 20, 2019 that instrument panels in the affected vehicles may have been fastened with an adhesive not originally specified by the automaker during the course of the lamination process. BMW immediately launched an investigation to determine whether that improper adhesive had, in fact, been used, and learn which vehicles contained the problematic instrument panel cluster modules. Production was halted at the assembly plant as soon as the investigation began.

Further review by both BMW and the component supplier revealed the specific production dates during which the incorrect adhesive was potentially used in manufacturing the vehicles’ instrument panels. Based on this information, BMW decided April 3 to launch a voluntary recall. As of that date, the automaker had not received any reports of injuries or accidents related to this issue.

The Solution

The recall will formally begin June 3, 2019. BMW will notify owners of the affected vehicles, explaining to them that authorized dealers will replace the flawed instrument panel assembly at no cost.

Owners may contact BMW customer service at 1-800-525-7417. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V-291.

Sean ReyesBMW Recalls 2018 Vehicles With Instrument Cluster And Air Bag Issues

Curbtender Recalls 2018 Ford Trucks With Curbtenders And Whelen Brake Lights

Laguna Hills, CA – May 8, 2019 – Curbtender, Inc. is recalling certain 2018 Ford F-650 and QT06 vehicles equipped with Curbtenders that include Whelen brake lights. Due to a possible wiring problem, these lights may incorrectly illuminate when the brake pedal has not been pressed. If this happens, it can confuse other drivers, increasing the risk of a crash. As many as six vehicles may be affected.  

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on the issue, the affected Ford F-650 and QT06 vehicles featuring Curbtenders and Whelen brake lights could have a wiring defect. The brake lights may unexpectedly illuminate when the brake has not been depressed, depending on the specific wiring of the vehicle. This would give an indication that the vehicle was stopping, when it actually wasn’t. Were this to happen, the faulty brake lights could confuse other drivers, potentially leading to a crash. 

Background of Issue

This action is similar to another current recall by Excellance, Inc. involving 2018 ambulances and emergency vehicles built on Ford E-350, E-450, F-650, F-550 4×4, Chevrolet G4500, G4500 Diesel, C3500, G3500, Freightliner M2, International 4300 and Dodge 4500 chassis and equipped with Whelen brake lights. As with this Curbtender recall, the brake lights may illuminate when the pedal hasn’t been pressed; if the brake lights improperly illuminate, it can increase the risk of a crash. Because of this issue, the affected vehicles would fail to comply with federal regulations covering lamps, reflective devices and associated equipment.

The Solution

There is no notification schedule yet for the start of the recall. The remedy is still under development by the manufacturer.

Owners may contact Curbtender customer service at 1-319-266-1721. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V237000.

Sean ReyesCurbtender Recalls 2018 Ford Trucks With Curbtenders And Whelen Brake Lights

TransitWorks Recalls Ford Transit and Dodge Ram Vehicles For Rear Seat Defect

Laguna Hills, CA – May 7, 2019 – TransitWorks is recalling certain 2015-18 Ford Transit, 2018 Ford Transit Connect and 2016 Dodge Ram ProMaster vehicles equipped with Freedman Seating GO-ES seats. The back seat cushion may not lock in place properly. In the event of a crash or a sudden stop, if the seat back moves the occupant would have an increased risk of injury. As many as 776 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this issue, when the back seat cushion is changed from the stowed position to an upright one, the cushion may not remain locked in place when under load, such as in a crash or a sudden stop. During the operation of the seat, and specifically when rotating the seat back cushion from the stowed to the upright position, there needs to be an audible click of the mechanism locking into position. In addition, the mechanism will rotate downwards. If the seat back failed to lock into place as designed, the back seat occupant would be at increased risk of injury during a crash or unexpected stop.

Timeline of Events

Freedman Seating Company GO-ES seats may have been manufactured with a back frame weldment that was too narrow, resulting in deformation of the seat back cushion dump mechanism, which may cause it to malfunction.

TransitWorks was notified of the recall Nov. 1, 2018 via email by Freedman Seating Company. On Nov. 6, TransitWorks requested additional information to determine whether single seats were also affected by the recall, and also began the process of identifying affected vehicles at this time. 

The Solution

The recall began Dec. 19, 2018. TransitWorks has notified owners and instructed them to contact Freedman seats for a repair kit, along with information on obtaining any necessary repairs.

Owners may contact Freedman Seating customer service at 1-800-443-4540 or TransitWorks customer service at 1-855-337-9543. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V229000.

Sean ReyesTransitWorks Recalls Ford Transit and Dodge Ram Vehicles For Rear Seat Defect

Chrysler Recalls 2019 Dodge Charger Vehicles With Missing Air Bag Information

Laguna Hills, CA – May 4, 2019 – Chrysler is recalling certain 2019 Dodge Charger vehicles in which both of the front sun visors may lack the required air bag warning information. Not having this information available could increase the risk of injury. As many as 1,097 vehicles may be affected. 

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this issue, the driver- and passenger-side sun visors on the affected 2019 Dodge Chargers may not have had the required air bag warning information attached. The driver-side sun visor may contain no air bag warning label at all, and the passenger sun visor may contain warning labels intended for non-U.S. markets. Because of these omissions, these vehicles do not comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard number 208, “Occupant Crash Protection.” Failure to provide the air bag warning information increases the chance of driver or occupant injury.

Timeline of Events

A 2019 Dodge Charger built for the U.S. market but containing non-U.S. sun visor air bag warning labels, was reported Feb. 1, 2019 in a customer protection audit at Chrysler’s Brampton Assembly Plant.

On Feb. 6, Chrysler Engineering was notified that non-U.S. sun visor air bag warning labels had been built into some U.S. market vehicles. The location and content of the non-U.S. sun visor air bag warning labels were compared against the federally mandated requirements, revealing differences between the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and the non-U.S. labels.

Chrysler decided March 21 through its Vehicle Regulations Committee to conduct a voluntary safety recall of the affected vehicles. 

The Solution

The recall began April 17, 2019. Chrysler has notified owners, and dealers will replace the driver and passenger sun visors, at no cost.  Consistent with past practices, the automaker will reimburse Dodge Charger owners who have incurred the cost of repairing a problem that subsequently became the subject of a field action. Chrysler requests that customers send the original receipt and/or other adequate proof of payment to the company for confirmation of the expense.

Owners may contact FCA US customer service at 1-800-853-1403. Chrysler’s number for this recall is V35. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V246000. 

Sean ReyesChrysler Recalls 2019 Dodge Charger Vehicles With Missing Air Bag Information

Chrysler Recalls 2019 Jeep Cherokees For Loose Passenger Seat Bolts

Laguna Hills, CA – May 3, 2019 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles U.S., LLC is recalling certain 2019 Jeep Cherokee vehicles due to a manufacturing defect. The front passenger seat mounting bolts may be loose. The resulting seat movement in the event of a crash could increase the risk of injury. As many as 253 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this problem, some 2019 Jeep Cherokee vehicles built at the Belvidere Assembly Plant could have front passenger seat mounting fasteners that were not tightened to the correct torque. When this happens, it could lead to the increased risk of passenger injury in an accident.   

Timeline of Events

Chrysler’s U.S. Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance organization first received word Jan. 22, 2019 of three vehicles from the first shift of Nov. 26, 2018 with front seat passenger seat mounting bolt torques below specification, and opened an investigation.

Further testing in January showed that vehicles built with front passenger seats not fully fastened down may not reliably be detected when test-driven. After reviewing Belvidere assembly records, Chrysler discovered that torque traceability records had been compromised. The automaker concluded that three factors contributed to the torque traceability problem: an untrained operator, improper tool tethering that allowed the operator to work out of the station and a fastener tool with limited torque traceability.

As of March 21, Chrysler had not received any complaints or field reports related to the issue, nor were they aware of any incidents or injuries resulting from the problem. Despite the absence of any such troubling reports or warranty claims, the automaker decided March 21 to conduct a voluntary safety recall of the affected vehicles.

The Solution

The recall formally began April 11, 2019. Chrysler has notified owners, and dealers will inspect the affected vehicles and if needed tighten the mounting bolts, free of charge. Consistent with past practices, the automaker will reimburse Jeep Cherokee owners who have incurred the cost of repairing a problem that subsequently became the subject of a field action; Chrysler requests that customers send the original receipt and/or other adequate proof of payment to the company for confirmation of the expense.

Owners may contact Chrysler customer service at 1-800-853-1403. Chrysler’s number for this recall is V31. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V248000.

Sean ReyesChrysler Recalls 2019 Jeep Cherokees For Loose Passenger Seat Bolts

GM Recalls 2017-19 Chevrolet Trax Vehicles For Steering Issues

Laguna Hills, CA – April 26, 2019 – General Motors is recalling certain 2017-2019 Chevrolet Trax vehicles. Improper welding of a joint in one or both of the front lower-control arms may result in the detachment of the arm from the vehicle. This could potentially cause the front wheel to toe outward, impacting the vehicle’s steering and handling and leading to a greater chance of crash. As many as 112,958 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this problem, an improperly welded joint in one or both of the front lower-control arms could fatigue and break, resulting in the vehicle’s lower control arm partially separating from the vehicle. If this were to happen, the front wheel attached to the control arm would toe outward, adversely affecting the vehicle’s steering and potentially causing the tire to rub against the wheel well, increasing the risk of a crash.

Timeline of Events

A GM dealer filed a field product report Nov. 14, 2018 concerning a left front-control arm that partially separated from a 2018 Chevrolet Trax. Based on a visual inspection of photos of the failed control arm, GM found that the weld connecting the arm to the bushing did not match design specifications. In response, GM’s supplier originally stated that the welds on the failed component part and other control arms produced at its facility conformed to design specs.

Following a formal product investigation Jan. 31, 2019, GM’s supplier confirmed on Feb. 28 that the welds on the failed part did not comply with the applicable design specifications, and that the welds were improperly modified because the lower-control arm stampings also did not match specs.

From March through April, the automaker worked with its supplier to identify affected vehicles that may have been manufactured with the defective part and to assess the condition’s impact on vehicle performance. GM engineers at the Milford Proving Grounds conducted drivability testing April 12 on a Chevrolet Trax vehicle with a front lower-control arm that was cut at the affected weld.

GM’s Safety and Field Action Decision Authority consequently decided April 15 to conduct a safety recall. As of that date, only two warranty claims relating to this condition had been reported for cars sold in the U.S., with no evidence of any crashes.   

The Solution

GM has not yet provided a notification schedule for the recall. The automaker will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the left and right front lower-control arms, replacing them as necessary, free of charge.

Owners may contact GM customer service at 1-800-222-1020. GM’s number for this recall is A182202370. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V312000.

Sean ReyesGM Recalls 2017-19 Chevrolet Trax Vehicles For Steering Issues

Honda Recalls 2018-19 Vehicles Because of Timing Belt Defect

Laguna Hills, CA – April 26, 2019 – Honda is recalling certain 2018-2019 Acura MDX and Honda Pilot vehicles and 2019 Acura RLX, RLX Sport Hybrid, TLX and Honda Odyssey and Ridgeline vehicles. In the affected vehicles, the timing belt teeth may separate from the belt itself, potentially resulting in engine stalling, which could cause a crash. As many as 93,946 vehicles may be affected.

The Defect

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report on this problem, the timing belt teeth may separate from the belt. This may result in an engine stall, which could increase the risk of crash.

Timeline of Events

From August to October 2018, upon receiving the first report of a stalled engine due to a defective timing belt, Honda opened an investigation. Three additional reports were received during this time.

In December, the supplier confirmed that an improperly hardened timing belt was the cause of teeth separating from the component. The supplier continued its investigation to find the cause of the faulty manufacturing. 

Following re-creation tests by the supplier, it was found that a particular mold used to produce the timing belts starting in May 2018 did not allow the belt to properly vulcanize and harden. The mold had been modified to prevent pressure from leaking. This problem, together with a bottom plate that had the moisture drain path partially blocked by excess rubber deterioration, adversely affected vulcanization. 

In April, Honda decided that a motor vehicle safety defect existed and launched a safety recall. As of April 4, the automaker received 15 warranty claims, 15 field reports, and no evidence of crashes or injuries related to this issue.

The Solution

The recall will begin June 1, 2019. Honda will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the vehicle, replacing any affected timing belt free of charge. Vehicles receiving replacement belts will also have the engine inspected and any damaged components replaced at no cost.

Honda owners may contact customer service at 1-888-234-2138. Honda’s number for this recall is L4M. Acura owners may contact customer service at 1-888-234-2138. Acura’s number for this recall is Z4L. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V298000.

Sean ReyesHonda Recalls 2018-19 Vehicles Because of Timing Belt Defect