GM still has no switch fix for half-million Caddies – USA TODAY

Posted: Monday, July 21, 2014

General Motors continues to look for a way to fix potentially faulty ignition switches on half a million Cadillacs thee weeks after recalling them and telling dealers not to sell any.

“We’re still working on it,” GM spokesman Alan Adler said Monday.

The ignition switches in 554,328 Cadillacs from the 2004-2014 model years can move out of the “run” position for two reasons and use different keys. Heavy key rings can pull the switch out of “run” if the car is jarred going over severe bumps, and the driver’s knee can bump the key and knock the switch out of position.

“We’re working on a solution that will work on all,” Adler says.

When the key moves out of “run” it shuts off the engine, kills the power assist to steering and brakes and can disable the airbags. That is the problem that forced GM to recall 2.19 million U.S. small cars in February and March, trigger federal investigations and fines after GM acknowledge it knew about the problem for years before the recall.

The fault is linked to 13 deaths.

GM has barred dealers from selling any of the recalled Cadillacs until it has come up with a fix. Dealers borrow money to buy their inventories, so are eager for GM to find a solution so they can resume selling the cars in stock.

The recalled Cadillacs don’t use the same switches as the small cars recalled earlier, so can’t simply substitute those for the current, faulty switches.

The Cadillac recall involves 2003 – 2014 Cadillac CTS, but excluding the new-design CTS sedan, and the 2004-2006 SRX. The SRX is Cadillac’s best-selling model, but the newest models aren”t affected.

The Cadillacs were among 7.55 million U.S. in GM’s June 30 recall involving six separate actions.

It’s isn’t unusual to recall cars before a fix is available. By law, automakers have to tell the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration within five work days after deterring they have found a safety flaw.

Sometimes, the car companies haven’t worked out repairs before they have to tell NHTSA and announce the recall.

Chrysler Group recalled roughly 1.6 million Jeeps a year ago and only recently arranged production capacity to make the parts needed to fix the Jeeps.

GM recalled some commercial vans in March for a passengers airbag fault, saying it had no way to fix the problem.

Unlike the recall of the Chevrolet Cobalt and Saturn Ion that sparked GM’s recall troubles this year, the Cadillac recall isn’t based around a system that didn’t meet GM’s specifications in the first place, and turned too easily..

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