Laguna Hills, CA – Aug. 15, 2019 – Mazda North American Operations recently announced the recall of tens of thousands of 2019 Mazda3 automobiles over an apparent problem that affects the model’s manual dimming mirror. In certain units, the adhesive that connects the rearview mirror with the unit upon which it’s affixed may not suddenly detach due to an assembly flaw. An inability to see what’s coming from behind can lead to an accident and thus warrants the Mazda3 mirror recall. The automaker says it will replace any flawed units for free, as soon as owners make an appointment to have this issue addressed.
According to filings with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Mazda plans to recall 22,571 Mazda3 vehicles over built-in defects with the manual dimming mirror. In certain instances, the mirrored glass that connects to the backing plate was improperly bonded at some point during the manufacturing process. Officials can’t point to a narrow window of time in which this issue originated, but are confident it occurred between Sept. 25, 2018 and June 24, 2019.
Unlike other vehicle-related failures in which certain sounds or circumstances may portend that there’s an issue (e.g. brakes pads that squeak when applying the brake pad), there are no obvious indications as to whether the rearview mirror unit is defective, according to NHTSA’s Part 573 Safety Recall Report.
Timeline of Events
The first time the automaker was alerted to what would eventually become a Mazda3 mirror recall was Feb. 20, wherein a customer contacted Mazda about the mirror randomly detaching from the unit that holds it. The part supplier figured that the easiest way to remedy this issue – assuming it was isolated – was to manually apply pressure to the glass and the backing plate by pressing the two together. When this didn’t work, Mazda opened up an investigation and determined March 9 the original problem stemmed from poor bonding.
At the time, Mazda had reason to believe this issue was isolated to a vehicle assembly plant in Japan and made the appropriate manufacturing adjustments to prevent something similar from happening again. However, the automaker was alerted to several similar manual mirrors detaching from their housing units in other parts of the world, such as Mexico. These field reports came in sporadically from April to June. Once the necessary corrective countermeasures were implemented in Mexico, Mazda convened a meeting July 23 and determined a more wide scale recall was in the company’s – and passengers’ – best interest.
Mazda has several recall actions in place prior to this most recent announcement, including a separate one that also affects the Mazda3 sedan. Approximately 17,000 2019 Mazda3s may have dashboard assemblies that provide wrong information to operators regarding the automobile’s diagnostics. Mazda3 owners were first alerted to this problem starting July 13. Meanwhile, in June, a recall action moved forward on 49,300 Mazda6s, which related to the premature development of corrosion and how that could impair the sedans’ power steering functionality . This problem affected owners in 22 states and the District of Columbia.
As for the Mazda3 mirror recall, the automaker knows how this problem can be remedied. As such, it’s encouraging those that receive a notice by first-class mail to take their sedans to their nearest Mazda dealer, where a replacement rearview mirror unit will be installed. Dealers are receiving their alerts presently and customers should start getting their notifications no later than Aug. 30.
For more information on this or other recalls, visit MotorSafety.org.