The Buick LaCrosse and Cadillac SRX are both a part of the latest ongoing GM recall campaign. Approximately 26,582 of the popular sedans and crossovers are heading back to their respective dealerships to sort out a software issue. The vehicles involved were produced from April 25, 2012, through March 6, 2013 (Buick LaCrosse), and from from May 29, 2012, through Feb. 18, 2013 (Cadillac SRX).
More specifically, the issue is that the software normally controls the transmission shifts, generally from neutral to reverse, or a forward gear. This used to be controlled by a physical component that would manually select the gear(s) for the transmission, but these are being phased out in favor of a software program that doesn’t add any weight to the vehicle. This is especially critical for all automakers to reduce the unsprung weight of their vehicles, in order to be compliant with increasingly stringent fuel economy standards. Moreover, having a software program will allow automakers to fine tune the shifts for optimal performance, as well as the aforementioned fuel economy.
However in this case, there appears to be a bug in the system, and the transmission could shift from manual to automatic mode, or more specifically, it could shift into what’s commonly referred to as “sport mode”. This would also eliminate the possibility of the vehicle’s engine braking to engage in the event of a sudden stop. The NHTSA has concluded that the removal of this could increase the risk of a crash, and possible injury to all occupants in the vehicle.
Thankfully, there have been no reports of complaints about the issue, nor has there been any reports of crashes and/or injuries. The issue was actually found in a 2014 development vehicle, but GM did not state which vehicle it was in for liability reasons.
GM has stated that they will reprogram the transmission control module at no charge to the owners, and that a recall notice will be sent to them with further instructions. If you feel that your vehicle has been involved in the latest GM recall, then you can contact your local Buick or Cadillac dealership and provide them with your VIN.
Source: The Los Angeles Times