Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Volkswagen recalls 38,000 cars due to fire risk

New York — The Volkswagen Group of America is recalling about 38,000 cars because a fuel leak in the engine may cause a fire.
The automaker said no injuries or accidents have been reported.
The recall covers 2014 to 2015 model years of the Volkswagen Beetle, Jetta, Passat and 2015 models of the Golf and GTI.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said drivers might smell gas inside their vehicles. Volkswagen is telling owners who smell gas or see the electronic power control warning light go on to immediately bring the vehicle to a Volkswagen dealer to have the fuel system inspected.
Volkswagen said that it would notify owners of the recalled cars. There is no cost to owners for the repairs.
Click here to watch video.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Chrysler recalls 67,000 older model pickups

NEW YORK -- Fiat Chrysler is recalling about 67,000 model year 2006 and 2007 pickups, including more than 4,000 in Canada, because of a problem that could allow the trucks to be started without the clutch being depressed.

Chrysler said one death is associated with the problem.

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration had opened an investigation into the trucks in May after receiving a report of a child starting a 2006 Dodge Ram 3500 pickup without using the clutch. The truck moved forward, striking and killing another child, the safety agency said.

The company said Monday that a wire in the clutch ignition interlock switch could break in trucks with manual transmissions. That could keep the truck from starting or, if drivers don't follow recommended starting procedures, the truck could move when the ignition key is turned.

Vehicles with manual transmissions are required to have interlock mechanisms that stop the motor from being started unless the clutch is depressed.

The company is recalling Dodge Dakota, Dodge Ram 1500, 2500, 3500 and Mitsubishi Raider pickups that were made between July 2005 and June 2006.

A total of 54,558 of them are in the United States, 4,356 in Canada, more than 7,600 in Mexico and 257 outside the NAFTA region.

To read complete article, click here. 

Monday, December 29, 2014

NHTSA closes three defect investigations of Chrysler vehicles.

The Detroit News (12/28, Shepardson, 504K) reports that the NHTSA is shutting down three defect investigations into Chrysler vehicles after Fiat Chrysler agreed to issue recalls covering more than 960,000 cars and trucks. The biggest of the recalls involves “643,618 2006-2007 Jeep Commanders and 2005-2007 Jeep Grand Cherokees recalled to address the problem of ignition turning off while driving.” NHTSA, says the News, is also closing a probe into “256,000 2005 Dodge Ram 1500 pickup trucks because they may have an axle pinion nut that can loosen, due to an undersized spline on the pinion gear.” NHTSA hasn’t posted the Chrysler recall notice yet on its website but “described it in other documents,” according to the story. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

BMW complies with NHSTA demand to recall Takata air bags nationwide.

ABC World News (12/22, story 5, 0:35, Muir, 5.84M) reports on the “massive” air bag recall Monday night where BMW agreed to NHSTA demands to replace Takata’s driver’s side air bags. ABC says BMW is the “last major car maker to comply,” recalling 140,000 vehicles made between 2004 and 2006. BMW claims no problems with its vehicles have been reported, although at least five deaths are blamed on Takata air bags. While Takata has argues there is “no scientific reason to expand the recall nationally,” ABC estimates 15 million airbags have been recalled in the US.
        The New York Times (12/23, Tabuchi, Subscription Publication, 9.9M) explains how the NHTSA demanded last month that Takata and its automakers recall Takata air bags, responding to pressure from lawmakers who questioned the previously geographically-limited recall. Initially, information showed that the airbags were at risk in humid areas, as Takata asserted moisture destabilized the chemical propellant that inflated its airbags. Resultantly, BMW previously limited its recall to about 11,700 cars in Florida, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. NHSTA Deputy Administrator David J. Friedman is cited to say that the automakers that had made regional recalls for driver-side airbags now had extended their recalls nationwide, and he is reviewing BMW’s recall filings to ensure the action covered all affected models and years.
        The AP (12/22) describes how the Takata air bags “explode with too much force and spew shrapnel at drivers and passengers,” and specifies that Takata counters the allegations by saying they “tested more than 1,000 air bag inflators from other regions without a single failure.” According to this article, BMW has recalled 574,000 cars in the US earlier this year. AP reports it is unknown whether Takata or the automakers will pay to replace the air bags. Altogether AP indicates 10 automakers have Takata air bags, and that there are about 30 million vehicles with the air bags in the US.
        Cars (12/22, Mays, 730K) details the models of cars known to carry the Takata driver’s side air bag, and reports that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has also recently recalled their models with Takata air bags. According to the article, FCA calls the latest move a “field action,” not a recall, “because only defects compel recalls, and there is no established defect.”

        Reuters (12/22, 4:56 p.m. ET, Woodall), the Automotive News (12/22, 3:32 p.m. ET, Lutz, 181K), and Bloomberg News (12/22, 4:16 p.m. ET, Drajem, 1.94M) provide similar coverage. 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Chrysler expands Takata air bag recall.

CBS News (12/21, 3.8M) reported online with continuing coverage of Chrysler’s decision to expand its “recall of driver’s side air bag inflators” made by Takata Corp., acceding “to government demands” about the need for nationwide recalls of affected vehicles. Chrysler is recalling “nearly 2.9 million older cars and trucks in the U.S.” now, which was “demanded” by NHTSA, the article said. 

Record for vehicles recalled in a single year smashed in 2014.

Bloomberg News (12/21, Green, Plungis, 1.94M) reported that, thanks to massive safety recalls this year by General Motors and Takata Corp., vehicle recalls in 2014 “surpassed the 60 million mark for the first time in a single year,” with the number of vehicles recalled in the US so far this year hitting 60.5 million vehicles, “almost double the previous annual record of 30.8 million recalled vehicles set in 2004.” According to senior analyst Michelle Krebs, today “automakers do not want to be accused of dragging their feet, so they’re very quick to issue a recall.” In light of all this, US consumers have not reduced their car-buying habits. 

Friday, December 19, 2014

Ford expands recall of vehicles with Takata airbags.

Several major national news outlets report that at the request of the NHTSA, Ford Motor is expanding the recall of vehicles with Takata airbags. The move adds 447,000 more Ford vehicles to the list of those recalled. Reports note that Ford was among five automakers asked by the NHTSA to expand a recall of vehicles with driver-side Takata airbags.
        For its part, the New York Times (12/19, B3, Kessler, Subscription Publication, 9.9M) reports Ford said that the expanded recall brings the total number of Ford vehicles recalled to “538,977 worldwide, 462,911 of which are in” the US. The article says that the scope of the airbag defect “has led to a standoff between” Takata and the NHTSA. According to the report, the NHTSA has demanded that the airbag manufacturer “issue a nationwide recall of all driver’s-side airbags,” but Takata responded, saying that the agency lacks the “authority to compel such an action.”

        The AP (12/19, Krisher) says that Ford’s expanded recall “puts pressure on BMW and Chrysler, the only two automakers,” which have not agreed to national recalls. Mazda and Honda have already expanded their recalls nationwide. The report notes that the NHTSA has threatened Takata and the remaining automakers with legal action if they don’t comply with the agency’s demand. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Mazda announces new limited airbag recall.

In continuing coverage of the Takata airbag recall, the Detroit (MI) News (12/4, 504K) reports that Mazda announced on Thursday that it would be recalling 40,000 more vehicles in the US, though the recall is limited to high-humidity states. The News reports that the models the automaker is recalling “include the 2003-2007 Mazda6, 2004-2008 RX-8, 2006-2007 Mazdaspeed6, 2004-2005 MPV, and 2004 B-Series Trucks” in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. The News notes that, despite NHTSA urging companies to expand their recalls nationwide, only Honda has told the safety agency that it will do so.
        Bloomberg News (12/5, Clothier, Welch, 1.94M) reports that Bob Carter, senior vice president of Toyota’s US operations, said on Wednesday that the automakers affected by the Takata airbag recall are planning on “hiring our own independent testing firm” to investigate the defective airbags.
        A second Bloomberg News (12/3, Green, Fisk, Plungis, 1.94M) article reports that US Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), a co-author of the TREAD Act, reminded automakers of their responsibility under the act to “provide as much helpful information as they can so we can help save lives,” noting, “reporting the bare minimum doesn’t cut it.” The article also says that David Friedman, NHTSA’s acting chief, told reporters in a phone interview “that the industry must stop ‘fighting with us’ and ‘put safety first.’”
        Group warns car buyers of the most recalled vehicles. The Arizona Republic (12/4, Merrill, 1.21M) reports on a list made by that found the 15 most recalled cars in the US, as well as the average amount of time an owner could expect to spend getting their vehicle repaired. The group found that the top three cars were the Chevrolet Cruze with 4.8 recalls taking an average of 14.4 hours to repair, the Toyota RAV4 with 4.7 recalls taking an average of 14 hours to repair, and the Jeep Grand Cherokee with 4.4 recalls taking an average of 13.2 hours to repair. The Republic notes that the Ford Focus and Honda Civic fared the best with both averaging fewer than 1 recall that took only 2.6 hours to repair on average

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

December 11 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm - $35 
Thistle Finch Distillery
417 W. Grant St., Lancaster, PA 17603

Come join The Common Wheel for a night of food, drink, dancing, and the most fun that you’ll have all holiday season! Take your chances on one of our many exciting raffle items while enjoying the sweet sounds of Jordan Rast and later the sweet beats of DJ Mast. With beer, wine, and cocktails by Thistle Finch Distillery and ríjuice, it is sure to be an event to remember. Enjoy food from local chefs and conversation with your favorite folk, all the while supporting your favorite community bike shop.
Tickets are on sale at our shop or click here to buy tickets

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

        Takata to expand recall. Reuters (12/2) reports that the Nikkei business daily reported that Takata is preparing to announce an expansion of its recall of its defective airbag inflators beyond high-humidity locations, though Reuters notes that a Takata spokeswoman denied that the company had made a decision on the expansion. Reuters reports that NHTSA had demanded that the company take action by Tuesday or risk being fined.