Maserati Issues Recall Over Software Glitch

Englewood Cliffs, N.J. – March 22, 2017 – Maserati North America has recalled more than 3,000 vehicles with faulty software. The recall impacts Levante sport utility vehicles produced between July and December 2016, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The car maker estimates that 100 percent of the models named in the action include defective software.

The Defect

Affected models are equipped with damaged engine software that may shift the vehicles into neutral or cut engine operations without notice. This normally occurs when the vehicles are traveling 2 miles per hour or slower, such as in heavy, bumper-to-bumper traffic. This fault increases the likelihood of crash, especially when road conditions improve, causing trailing drivers to accelerate rapidly. Even so, no injuries have occurred as a result of the software defect.

Timeline of Events

On Oct. 18, 2016, Maserati North America received a complaint from one driver who claimed his vehicle shifted into neutral without his assistance. The car maker immediately opened an investigation into the report and called for testing in an attempt to replicate and evaluate the possible issue. These trials concluded Nov. 9. Engineers were indeed able to replicate the issue, ordering follow-up diagnostics to better understand the underlying cause. These tests indicated that the engine software was to blame.

On Dec. 9, developers at the car company announced that they had coded and validated a patch to address the glitch. Over the next five days, engineers performed emissions tests on vehicles with the updated software to ensure that exhaust levels remained in step with federal regulations. The new software had no impact on emissions and was approved for use.

Maserati North America issued an initial recall on December 11, 2016. However, field tests revealed that the problem still persisted, despite the patch. Between Dec. 14 and Jan. 20, 2017, engineers and programmers replicated the issue on site and developed a newer iteration of the engine software that worked. The car maker integrated the new software into its production lines on Feb. 21. It issued a second recall three days later. Dealers made aware of the problem March 17.

The Solution

The car manufacturer has ordered dealers to update the engine software in all impacted models, free of charge, according to documents filed with the NHTSA. Owners should receive notification March 31, 2017.

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Maserati Recalls Luxury Vehicles Over Improper Seat Wiring

Englewood Cliffs, N.J. – Feb. 27, 2017 – Maserati has recalled more than 39,000 vehicles due to improper seat wiring. The recall affects Ghibli and Quattroporte sedans and Levante crossover sports utility vehicles produced between 2014 and 2017, according to documentation from the National Highway Safety Transportation Administration.

The Defect

The seat-wiring layouts in these vehicles interfere with internal adjustment motor housing, grinding against associated various metal fixtures. This wears down cables over time and causes seat-adjustment features to cease operation. In some cases, this constant friction can lead to electrical shorts and possible vehicle fires.

Timeline of Events

  • In December 2015, Maserati launched an investigation after an owner in Korea reported seat harness damage. The inquiry focused on the parts supplier Lier, which fabricated the seat wiring and adjustment motor assemblies.
  • In January 2016, Lear offered an explanation: The wiring layout was contacting the motor assembly and causing damage. Throughout the month, Maserati received nine additional complaints.
  • During the following month, another complaint came in – this one included the occurrence of an electrical fire. The automaker and its parts provider analyzed the issue and confirmed the cause.
  • By the close of April 2016, Maserati had developed a solution. Technicians for the company were ordered to install felt strips and clamping devices to separate seat wiring and adjustment motor components.
  • In September 2016, a Levante owner filed a seat malfunction complaint. Maserati added the vehicle to its list of affected models.

The Solution

The car manufacturer has agreed to install new seat wiring layouts in affected vehicles. Dealers are to make the repairs free of charge. Maserati will begin notifying impacted owners March 21, 2017. Every customer should receive an official communication within 60 days of this date. Parts will be available within 90 days of the schedule contact date.

MotorSafety.orgMaserati Recalls Luxury Vehicles Over Improper Seat Wiring

Software Issue Plagues Maserati

Englewood Cliffs, N.J. – Jan. 20, 2017 – Maserati North America, Inc. has announced that it will recall certain Levante S vehicles due to an engine software issue that could lead to transmission problems or even a sudden shutdown.

The Defect

Maserati will recall model year 2017 Levante S cars manufactured between July 1, 2016 and Dec. 13, 2016, according to documents compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. These vehicles all contain software bugs that may cause the transmission to shift to neutral or stop altogether when the car is traveling at 2 miles per hour. This significantly increases the risk of a crash, especially in heavy traffic scenarios.

Timeline of Events

  • Oct. 18, 2016 – Maserati received a complaint from China regarding a sudden, unexplained transmission shift during heavy traffic. Several tests were performed in an effort to replicate and isolate the problem.
  • Nov. 9, 2016 – The company successfully reproduced the issue and conducted follow-up tests to determine that it was indeed a software glitch.
  • Dec. 9, 2016 – A software re-flash solution was developed and tested to ensure that it could resolve the glitch without affecting other aspects of performance, such as emissions numbers.
  • Dec. 14, 2016 – Maserati issued its safety recall.


Maserati made the software available to fix this bug in December 2016. Customers were notified by letter and advised to contact their local dealers to set up appointments for repairs. The new software upload is expected to take approximately one hour to complete.

MotorSafety.orgSoftware Issue Plagues Maserati