Vehicle recall bonanza
Despite the recent UK car sales increase news, our market (and that of Europe) remains depressed. With demand struggling to meet output, many car companies have been forced to make harsh decisions. Reduced production hours, staff redundancies and even complete factory closures have been bitter pills for the industry to swallow. Yet, the plethora of recent major recalls may lead some of us to conclude that car companies have been keener to get their latest models to market as soon as possible, instead of spending a little more time to ensure that they were ready for sale.
We received an enquiry from a GEM member recently, who ordered a new Nissan Micra, only to discover that delivery of his car was delayed, due to its braking system needing work, under an internal recall notice, and the parts needed were not available in the UK. Unfortunately, the Indian-built Micra appears to be the least of Nissan’s woes, because it has been forced to recall 841,000 examples worldwide. Older Micras, all of which were built in Sunderland between December 2002 and May 2006, are being recalled as well, to have either their steering wheel bolts tightened, or the steering columns replaced.
Kia has to replace brake light switches on its cars that were built between 2006 and 2011, including the Sportage, Sorento, Soul, Carens, Optima and Sedona models. In a recent press release, Kia Motors UK commented that a faulty switch might cause the brake lights to fail, although I wonder whether, or not, the cruise control is deactivated from the same switch on these cars – if it is, Kia UK has, cleverly, side-stepped a PR-disaster, akin to that experienced by Toyota a few years ago.
Yet, the Japanese company is not escaping this time either, because almost a quarter of a million Prius models, built between March and October 2009, will be receiving new brake pressure accumulators.
Therefore, if you have been struggling to book your Nissan, Kia, or Toyota, into a main dealer workshop, bear in mind that they might be a little busier than usual.