The following vehicles have been recalled from their respective automakers over the past several days. GM’s Chevrolet and GMC divisions, Acura, Nissan, and Ford have all issued recalls for their vehicles. In the case of Tesla, they’ve issued a recall for their Model S’s adapter, and with Chrysler’s Jeep division, it’s a matter of not carrying out a recall that began in June.
Starting with GM, they have issued a recall for their 2014 Chevrolet Silverado, as well as their GMC Sierra full-size pickup trucks due to an issue with the software. It has been determined that it could be the cause of the exhaust components overheating, which could lead to a fire. Thus far, GM has confirmed that there have been eight fires as a result of this defect, although there have not been any injuries reported. Interestingly enough, all incidents occurred in cold-weather states. This is the second recall for the pickup twins, and the General was hoping to make an impact in the hotly-contested full-size pickup war, currently led by Ford’s F-Series (the Dearborn automaker recently revealed their latest generation F-150 at the North American International Auto Show).
Nissan has issued a recall for their slow-selling 2014 Titan King and Crew Cab full-size pickup trucks. In all, nearly 1,000 of these that were produced from August 27, 2013, through November 13, 2013 will be recalled for having incorrect labels for the tires. The maximum load and passenger carrying capacity of the vehicle has been overstated on the original labels, which is a violation of federal regulation. If the owner were to exceed the load, or the cargo capacity of the tires, it could lead to not only there being structural damage of the tire, but a loss of the control of the vehicle as well. There has been an uptick in recalls for incorrect labels in the past year, with other automakers such as Toyota and Rolls-Royce being affected.
As stated earlier, Tesla is not recalling their Model S, but rather the adapters that are used to charge the electric sedans quickly. It has been determined that either the adapter itself, the charging cord, or the wall outlet could overheat while the vehicle is charging, increasing the risk of a fire. Tesla is handling the recall in an unorthodox way; they’re issuing software updates directly to the owners electronically. They have confirmed that most of the adapters have already received the software update, and that the latest recall affects about 29,000 of them.
For Chrysler, the infamous Jeep recall from last summer has not begun. Chrysler determined that the solution to the exploding fuel tank (in the event of a rear collision) issue is to install a trailer hitch, which would absorb a part of the impact in the event of a rear collision. Chrysler has stated that the design of the trailer hitch has been finalized, and that production should be ramping up, in order to satisfy the volume target needed for the recall. It has not been determined of the NHTSA will crash-test the hitch, in order to be satisfied with the solution.
Speaking of the NHTSA, they have expanded their investigation into the reports of fires occurring in the headliners of certain Dodge Durangos and Jeep Grand Cherokees. Over 593,000 of the SUVs that were produced for the 2011-2013 model years are being investigated, after initially only investigating 146,000 of the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee only. According to the NHTSA, “Customers reported a range of fire conditions ranging from minor overheating to an open flame at the headliner and/or sun visor material while driving the vehicle”. They also went on to say that “In some reports, the fire spread to the front seats and/or door panels of the vehicle. In one report, the sunroof was damaged causing the glass to shatter. The cause of these fires is an electrical short in the vanity lighting wiring circuit that is routed to either one of the sun visors.” In addition, “The sun visor wiring may be penetrated, or pierced by one of these screws either during initial vehicle assembly or subsequent headliner area repairs. The piercing causes an electrical short that could result in a fire. There is no dedicated fuse for the affected circuit so the electrical short can continue until the short clears or the vehicle is keyed off”. Finally, “the Dodge Durango uses the same headliner assembly, and Chrysler indicates there are similar headliner fire incidents affecting this model, therefore, these vehicles have been added to the scope of the investigation.”
Finally, Ford has just issued a recall for their 2012-2013 Edge midsize crossover utility vehicle, including some that were a part of a previous recall. In all, approximately 46,000 vehicles will be affected. The recall was initiated over concerns of fuel leaks, which could increase the risk of a fire occurring. In a report from Ford that was filed with the NHTSA, “The fuel line pulse damper metal housing may crack as a result of an improper manufacturing process. A cracked fuel line pulse damper housing may result in a combination of fuel odor, seepage, or a continuous leak while the fuel system is pressurized”. This was determined after Ford began to investigate the numerous warranty claims.
In the latest GM, Tesla, Jeep, Nissan, Chrysler, Dodge, and Ford recalls, all of the automakers will make the necessary repairs to the vehicles (in the case of Dodge and Jeep, the expansion of the investigation is necessary, in order for the NHTSA to request Chrysler to issue a recall), all at no charge to their respective owners.