By Mike Colias, Crain News Service
DETROIT (May 20, 2014) — General Motors Co. is recalling 2.42 million cars, trucks and SUVs in the U.S. in four separate safety recalls, raising its recall total for the year to more than 13.6 million vehicles.
The auto maker said May 20 that it expects to take a second-quarter charge of about $400 million, mostly to cover the cost of recalls announced during the period. That includes a $200 million charge from five recalls that GM announced late last week.
The recalls announced by GM today include:
• 1.3 million Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse and GMC Acadia large crossovers from model years 2009 to 2014, and 2009-10 Saturn Outlooks, because front seat-belt cables can wear out over time and separate, increasing injury risk in a crash. In a stop-sale notice sent to dealers on May 19, GM said an inspection and repair process for the crossovers “is currently being developed. Parts needed to complete this repair are not available at this time.”
• 1.1 million Chevy Malibus from 2004-08 and Pontiac G6 sedans from 2005-08 because of a shift cable in the four-speed automatic transmission that can wear out, “resulting in mismatches of the gear position indicated by the shift lever.”
It is an expansion of a recall GM announced in late April for 2007-2008 Saturn Aura sedans, which share a platform with the Malibu and G6. GM said the transmission shift cable might fracture, which could prevent the driver from selecting a different gear, putting the car in park or removing the key from the ignition.
GM said it is aware of 18 crashes and one injury in crashes involving the Malibus and G6s. It previously said it knows of 28 crashes and four injuries involving the Aura models.
• 1,402 Cadillac Escalade and Escalade ESV models from 2015, which went on sale last month, because of a problem with the passenger side airbag that could result in partial deployment in a crash. GM said it has told dealers not to deliver 2015 Escalades and has notified 224 customers via overnight letters, calls and emails, instructing them to not let anyone ride in the passenger seat until the vehicle has been serviced. The company said it is unaware of related crashes or injuries.
• 58 Chevrolet Silverado HD and GMC Sierra HD full-sized pickups from the 2015 model year for a fire risk. GM said that retention clips attaching the truck’s generator fuse block to the vehicle body can become loose and potentially lead to a fire. GM said it is unaware of related crashes or injuries.
The campaigns increase GM’s count since Jan. 1 to 29 recalls covering more than 13.6 million U.S. vehicles, although those figures count some vehicles more than once because they are being called back to fix multiple potential safety defects.
Included in the total is 2.6 million Chevy Cobalts, Saturn Ions and other small cars from the mid-2000s that were built with a faulty ignition switch, which GM has linked to 13 deaths. GM is expected to conclude within a few weeks an internal investigation into its handling of the problem.
Last week, GM agreed to pay a maximum fine of $35 million and to change its internal safety processes as part of a consent decree with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA).
GM has said it is implementing a more-rigorous safety approach to catch problems earlier and fix ones that have lingered for years.
This report appeared on autonews.com, the website of Automotive News, a Detroit-based sister publication of Tire Business.