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13 Sep 2014

2015 Chevy Corvette stop-sale issued, recall could be next

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2015 Chevrolet Corvette

It might be difficult to get ahold of a 2015 Chevrolet Corvette for a little while. Not only are the sports cars incredibly quick, but Chevy is issuing two, separate stop-sale orders on the ‘Vette that covers about 2,800 of them. According to Automotive News, recalls for the problems are also possible in the future.

The first stop-sale covers approximately 2,000 units of the 2015 Corvette because of a potential problem with the driver’s side airbag. It’s possible that it might not be attached to the steering wheel properly, and according to Automotive News, the bag could separate from the wheel in a crash.

The other problem covers about 800 Corvettes because only one of the parking brake cables may be fully attached, rather than two of them. That obviously makes the handbrake less effective. The cars need inspected to check for the problem, but Chevy says that most of them are still at dealers in its release.

For the moment, Chevy is only referring to these issues as stop-sales, and no recalls for the problems are officially announced yet. Autoblog has reached out to the automaker for more information. We’ll update this story when we hear back. In the meantime, scroll down to read the official statement on the stop-sales.

Continue reading 2015 Chevy Corvette stop-sale issued, recall could be next

2015 Chevy Corvette stop-sale issued, recall could be next originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 12 Sep 2014 11:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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13 Sep 2014

Ford Recalling 70k Escape and Mariner Hybrids for cooling issue

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2008 Ford Escape Hybrid

Ford is recalling about 70,209 examples of the 2005-2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and the 2006-2008 Mercury Mariner Hybrid because the cooling pumps for their hybrid systems could fail.

According to the company’s defect notice, it’s possible for the original “Motor Electronics Coolant (MEC) Pump” to wear out and fail, which would could cause the hybrid system to overheat. If this happens, the vehicle goes into a safety mode that takes away most or all of its power. However, braking and steering still operate normally. After cooling down, the affected models restart normally. The company says that it’s not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this problem.

Ford will begin repairing the vehicles in late October, and dealers will be installing improved, brushless pumps on the affected models at no charge to owners. If drivers had their pumps fail before this recall, they can contact Ford for a possible reimbursement. Scroll down to read the recall announcement from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or download the full defect notice as a PDF, here.

Continue reading Ford Recalling 70k Escape and Mariner Hybrids for cooling issue

Ford Recalling 70k Escape and Mariner Hybrids for cooling issue originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 12 Sep 2014 13:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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13 Sep 2014

130,000 Toyota Tundra pickups recalled over airbag issue

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2014 Toyota Tundra

Toyota is announcing a recall for about 130,000 examples of the 2014 Tundra Tundra pickup in Crew-Max Cab and Double Cab configurations.

According to the company, the “garnish on the center pillars” inside the trucks might not have been installed correctly. If the vehicle were in an accident, the side curtain airbags could deploy in the wrong shape. Toyota says that it’s not aware of any crashes, injuries or fatalities related to this potential problem.

To fix the issue, the pickups will have their interior center pillars inspected, and if faulty, the pieces will be replaced. Obviously, this will be done at no cost to owners. Scroll down to read the full announcement.

Continue reading 130,000 Toyota Tundra pickups recalled over airbag issue

130,000 Toyota Tundra pickups recalled over airbag issue originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 12 Sep 2014 17:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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10 Sep 2014

Porsche 918 Spyder gets tiny recall for rear control arms

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2015 Porsche 918 Spyder

As the recent US recall of a single Koenigsegg Agera shows, even low-production supercars aren’t immune from safety campaigns. Now, there’s another example that even the fastest cars can have their faults. The Porsche 918 Spyder is a pretty fantastic vehicle for its ability to mix hybrid fuel economy and incredible amounts of power, but Porsche has a problem on a few units of its halo model.

According to the recall document from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Porsche needs to inspect and possibly repair five 918s in the US because the rear axle control arms may break, which could cause a loss of control while driving. In the full defect notice, Porsche says that it first noticed the problem on June 26 when the parts failed during “heavy duty durability testing (extreme race conditions)” at the Nardo test track in Italy. It transported the components back to the company’s lab for inspection, and on July 18 it issued a stop-sale to inspect the suspension parts on the supercar. The automaker also contacted owners by phone to warn them not to use the car on track, until repaired.

The affected 918s will be inspected, and if the cars have the bad parts, the control arms are will be replaced. Obviously, this will be done at no cost to owners. According to a Porsche spokesperson speaking to Autoblog, in addition to the five US cars potentially affected, there were 45 worldwide. All of the cars have now been checked. Scroll down to read the report from the regulator or download the full defect notice as a PDF, here.

Continue reading Porsche 918 Spyder gets tiny recall for rear control arms

Porsche 918 Spyder gets tiny recall for rear control arms originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 09 Sep 2014 11:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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09 Sep 2014

GM’s board of directors was ‘shocked’ and ‘stunned’ by recall woes

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General Motors-Recall

With nearly 30 million cars worldwide covered under recalls, General Motors hasn’t exactly had the best year. While sales haven’t suffered too badly in the US, the cost of all of the safety campaigns has been a big drain financially for the last two quarters. As investors’ representatives within the company, you might have expected GM’s board of directors to have seen these problems coming. However, according to a new report from The New York Times, the board was just as in the dark about it all as the rest of us until the February ignition switch recall that first brought the fiasco into the public light.

“We didn’t understand the enormity of the situation at the beginning, because I don’t think management did,” said board chairman Theodore Solso to the NYT.

According to the report, safety was very low on the board’s priorities before February. Until then, the last time that vehicle safety was discussed even briefly was in October 2013. With so little information, the board was in confusion once the recalls started cascading out. “We didn’t understand the enormity of the situation at the beginning, because I don’t think management did,” said board chairman Theodore Solso to the NYT. Solso claims he was “‘shocked’ and ‘stunned'” when he learned how the ignition switch situation had been handled from Anton Valukas’ findings. Investors weren’t happy either, and they have responded with lawsuits alleging that the whole debacle allegedly harmed the value of the company.

Internally, the board also had some concern about how things were progressing. Unnamed company officials told the NYT that there was distrust of new CEO Mary Barra and general counsel Michael Millikin. They thought that two of them had too much power in deciding the automaker’s response. “It was a little bit of Mary and a whole lot of Millikin,” one said to the paper.

The result of the chaos might be a better business, though. “The ignition switch recall basically raised the bar in terms of increased involvement,” Solso said. Safety is a much bigger topic in meetings now, and board members are taking a more active role in the topic.

GM’s board of directors was ‘shocked’ and ‘stunned’ by recall woes originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 08 Sep 2014 16:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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05 Sep 2014

Saturn Vue ignition issue was discussed three times before recall, new documents reveal

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General Motors-Sales

Despite the tens of millions of recalled vehicles this year, it’s somewhat rare that we get a glimpse into what goes into deciding when to conduct one of these safety campaigns. New documents published by General Motors and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are giving us an interesting opportunity to see how the sausage is made and show the number of meetings it takes to declare a recall.

In early August, GM added about another 269,000 vehicles to its 2014 recall tally in the US when it announced a slew of new safety campaigns. Among them was a fix for the 2002-2004 Saturn Vue that covered 202,155 of them in the US. The problem was that the key could be removed from the ignition even when it wasn’t in the “OFF” position, and that had caused two crashes and one injury, according to the automaker.

Where we start to see behind the veil is in the defect notice freshly released by NHTSA. It shows that GM began investigating more widely for ignition switches in April, shortly after the company expanded its ignition switch recall to a variety of Saturn products, among others, according to Automotive News. The automaker found 152 reports in the 2002-2004 Vue of vehicles rolling away or the key being removed out of a total population of 215,243 units worldwide.

GM first discussed that data with NHTSA on June 17, then on July 7 and again on July 24. The company’s Open Issue Review Panel looked at it on July 28, and on July 31, its “Safety Field Action Decision Authority decided to conduct a safety-related recall.” That’s over a month of meetings to decide on just one safety campaign. The entire defect notice is available for download from NHTSA as a PDF, here.

Saturn Vue ignition issue was discussed three times before recall, new documents reveal originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 05 Sep 2014 17:46:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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04 Sep 2014

Koenigsegg Agera recall proves one really is the loneliest number

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Koenigsegg Agera

Automotive recalls are often deadly serious matters of safety, but sometimes one comes around that makes you scratch your head and wonder, ‘Why even bother?’ That was the exactly the case with a newly reported campaign from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that bordered on the absurdly humorous. It concerned a single Koenigsegg Agera built in December 2012 as a 2013 model for the US.

According to NHTSA, the tire pressure monitoring system in this Koenigsegg wasn’t up to US standards because it might not have illuminated the warning light when the vehicle was restarted. To fix things, the company had to find this single owner and have updated TPMS software installed on the supercar. The driver never reported this alleged problem ever actually occurring, and according to Koenigsegg’s noncompliance notice, this was the only vehicle it had delivered in the US since 2011.

Clearly NHTSA was taking its duty to police vehicle safety very seriously with this recall. Scroll down to read the agency’s full recall report or download the complete noncompliance notice as a PDF, here.

Continue reading Koenigsegg Agera recall proves one really is the loneliest number

Koenigsegg Agera recall proves one really is the loneliest number originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 04 Sep 2014 14:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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30 Aug 2014

Audi recalling 70k TDI models worldwide over braking problem [UPDATE]

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Audi A7 TDI

Audi is issuing a recall covering some 70,000 vehicles worldwide, due to problems with their brake boosters. According to Automotive News Europe, diesel-powered examples of the A4, A5, A6, A7 and Q7 are all being called back due to this issue.

The report indicates that while the brakes in these vehicles still function, the enhancing power from the booster may fail due to a possible leaky membrane.

All of the affected vehicles are powered by the 3.0-liter TDI turbodiesel V6, and were built between March and December of 2012. It is unclear as of this writing how many of these vehicles are in the States, though remember, US customers are not privy to 3.0 TDI examples of the A4 or A5. Autoblog has reached out to Audi for specific numbers, and we’ll update this space when we hear more.

UPDATE: Audi spokesperson Mark Dahncke confirmed that this recall affects 1,814 vehicles in the United States – all 2013 model year Q7 TDI vehicles built between June 5 and November 29, 2012.

Audi recalling 70k TDI models worldwide over braking problem [UPDATE] originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 30 Aug 2014 13:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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27 Aug 2014

Suzuki Kizashi recalled due to pesky spiders

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2010 Suzuki Kizashi

Spiders seem to love the fuel tanks of Japanese sedans. Mazda had to recall its Mazda6 twice for arachnid webs blocking their car’s vent lines. Now, the Suzuki Kizashi is also being called in because spiders can block the car’s evaporative canister vent hose, a condition which could cause excessive negative pressure in the tank, eventually leading to a crack and fuel leak. The campaign covers about 19,249 examples of the 2010-2013 model year Kizashi built from October 2009 through July 2012.

According to the automaker’s defect notice released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the first report of a spiderweb blocking a vent line was in 2011. It began monitoring field data and found six more incidents from 2011 to 2013. In 2014, there was one more case, and with further investigation, Suzuki decided to initiate a recall. There are no reports of accidents or injuries of the webs causing accidents or injuries in the US.

In a similar move to Mazda, Suzuki is replacing the evaporative canister vent line with one that has a filter in place to keep the spiders out. Also, if the lines are obstructed by webs in a specific vehicle, the fuel tank will also get swapped. Scroll down to read the full recall announcement from NHTSA.

Continue reading Suzuki Kizashi recalled due to pesky spiders

Suzuki Kizashi recalled due to pesky spiders originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 27 Aug 2014 15:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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23 Aug 2014

Weekly Recap: Alfa Romeo’s US plans take shape

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Alfa Romeo 4C

In a strong signal of support, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles moved to reinforce Alfa with a new head of North American operations, Reid Bigland.

Alfa Romeo was in the news this week, and for once, it didn’t involve another rumor the brand was going to be sold off to the highest bidder.

Quite the opposite. In a strong signal of support, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles moved to reinforce Alfa with a new head of North American operations, Reid Bigland, who had been in charge of the Ram division. Harald Wester remains global CEO of Alfa and Maserati.

It’s a significant move, as Bigland has been considered a rising star within the Fiat-Chrysler conglomerate, and pulling him away from the important Ram business was not a decision made lightly. At first blush, it even seems questionable, as Alfa has only one car, the 4C, that’s about to go on sale in America.

But that will change – or at least FCA says it will – in short order.

Continue reading Weekly Recap: Alfa Romeo’s US plans take shape

Weekly Recap: Alfa Romeo’s US plans take shape originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 23 Aug 2014 12:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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