GM issues 3 new recalls unrelated to switch – USA TODAY

Posted: Monday, March 17, 2014

General Motors announced three new recalls — not related to last month’s ignition switch recall — involving nearly 1.5 million vehicles.

The big automaker also said it will take a $300 million charge against first-quarter earnings to pay for the four recalls.

GM said the trio of new recalls is “a result of (CEO) Mary Barra’s request for a comprehensive internal safety review following the ignition switch recall.”

Last month’s switch recall involves 1.37 million vehicles in the U.S. and has triggered lawsuits and federal investigations into why GM knew of a switch problem as early as 2001 but only recalled the cars last month GM says it knows of 31 crashes and 12 deaths linked to the switch recall and new probe in Canada could add a recent death there.

The new recalls not connected to the earlier action:

• Seat-mounted side airbags could fail due to a fault in the wiring in 1.18 million full-size crossover SUVs, widely used as family vehicles: 2009-2013 Chevrolet Traverse, 2008-2013 Buick Enclave, 2008-2013 GMC Acadia and 2008-2010 Saturn Outlook

GM says the danger happens if the airbag warning light on the instrument panel illuminates, but the owner doesn’t take the vehicle to a dealership to check the bags. Eventually, the wiring can fail and the bags won’t work.

Dealers will remove a connector and solder and splice wires in the air bag harness. GM says it has no record of injuries or accidents as a result of the problem.

•A plug in the brake system of 63,900 2013 and 2014 Cadillac XTS full-size sedans can come loose, allowing corrosion in the system and causing overheating that could lead to an engine-compartment fire.

GM says it has reports to two fires at dealerships in dealer-owned cars, and two reports of warranty claims, but not fires, in customers’ cars. No injuries have been reported.

•Unbelted front passengers in Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana full-size vans can suffer serious head injuries because the material covering the passenger-side air bag doesn’t meet federal standards.

Passengers who wear safety belts are not at risk, GM says.

Involved are 303,000 2009-2014 vans with gross vehicle weight ratings of less than 10,000 lbs. — standard- and medium-duty models. Such vans primarily are in commercial use by tradesmen and delivery services. Some are used as passenger shuttles by hotels, airports and churches.

GM issued a “stop delivery” order for models still at dealerships, until a fix can be developed. The car company says it is “working diligently” to come up with materials that will meet the head-injury standard for non-belted riders, but can’t say how long that will take.


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