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GM Recalls Nearly 60,000 Vehicles in Two Campaigns

March 2, 2015
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Late last week, General Motors Co. issued two new recalls covering nearly 60,000 newer model vehicles. GM’s most recent recall campaigns were not for major safety defects but rather issues that make the vehicles non-compliant to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS).

The larger recall affects 58,698 units of Cadillac ATS cars from the 2013 to 2015 model years. The campaign specifically covers the vehicles built from April 25, 2012 to February 9, 2015. GM’s notice to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicated that the roof panels may inadvertently close when “Slide” and “Tilt” controls are pressed. The main issue here is that the aforementioned controls are not recessed enough, making the ATS units non-compliant to FMVSS No. 118, which is about power-operated components such as roof panel systems. The non-recessed switches are also a concern because these require less force to activate the roof panel, increasing risk of personal injury.

The Detroit automaker learned about the problem while testing a 2016 model in January. The model that was tested features the same switches used in the recalled models. The company said it is unaware of accidents, injuries or deaths linked to the issue; it also claimed that there are no customer complaints related to it. Dealers will address the problem by replacing the roof console accessory switch trim plate.

The other recall affects significantly fewer units. GM’s other campaign covers 1,177 2014 Chevrolet Impala full-size sedans produced from November 15, 2012 to May 27, 2014. The problem with the 2014 Impalas are the electronic parking brake. According to GM, the parking brake’s piston actuation arm may not completely retract, allowing the brake pads to remain partially engaged. Because the brake pads stay in contact with the rotors, it is possible that excessive brake heat may cause a fire.

It must be noted that this parking brake issue makes the Impalas non-compliant to FMVSS No. 135, which is regarding light vehicle brake systems.

The Detroit News pointed out that the vehicles covered by the parking brake campaign were also part of a recall last year which affected 132,921 units. The Impalas were said to have underwent incorrect software reprogramming. Earlier this year, GM found out through a dealer in the Middle East that the software update for the large sedans were modified from the revised software to the original one and that the units repaired after January 21 may have received the wrong software update.

Photo credit: © General Motors CC BY-NC

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