Washington, D.C. – Feb. 15, 2017 – Mazda Motor Corporation has announced that it will recall almost 174,000 vehicles due to faulty driver seats. The recall affects 2011 Mazda 2 subcompacts, along with Mazda 3 and Mazdaspeed 3 compacts produced in 2010 and 2011, according to documentation from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Faulty seat height adjustment links lie at the heart of the problem. These fixtures are abnormally weak in the affected models and can loosen, or in some cases detach completely, causing the driver seat to recline dramatically. This increases the likelihood of an accident.
Timeline of Events
Several Mazda owners have filed NHTSA complaints mentioning the issue. The earliest dates back to April 2012, when one Mazda 3 owner in Decatur, Alabama discovered that the adjustment rail on the front driver seat had snapped. Another Mazda 3 owner in Port Jefferson Station, New York filed a complaint earlier this month, telling the NHTSA that the adjustment link gave way suddenly during operation. The driver urged the agency to address the issue with Mazda.
“The manufacturer should have a recall on this problem immediately before someone gets killed,” the complaint read.
The NHTSA submitted the official recall Feb. 8 and contacted Mazda five days later.
Mazda dealers have been instructed to evaluate affected vehicles, specifically the driver seat adjustment link. If this fixture is cracked, on-site personnel will replace it entirely with a modified part. Should the adjustment link show no damage, it will be reinforced with an additional bracket. Mazda has also advised dealers to install two extra push nuts per link in these cases. These repairs will be performed free of charge.
The carmaker is expected to notify all dealers by March 15, while owners should receive confirmation by March 31.