With the amount of research and development that takes place before any vehicle is launched onto the market, it’s surprising the number of recalls that take place. A defective auto injury lawyer recently expressed concern over the high number of safety issues that had necessitated cars being called back into dealers for repairs.
More than 1.3 Million BMWs Recalled
From Frankfurt, the home of one of the auto industry’s marquis models, word recently came that BMW was forced to recall more than 1.3 million vehicles across two full ranges. Of that total, fully 368,000 of the affected 5 and 6-Series cars manufactured between 2003 and 2010 are located in the United States. A Portland defective auto injury lawyer estimates that as many as 5,000 of the BMWs being recalled are located in Oregon.
The problem stems from an electrical fault, though BMW maintains the flaw has only been found on a few cars. They say a battery cable covering located in the trunk was incorrectly installed. Potential hazards include the car not being able to start and possibly catching on fire. According to BMW, they have received a number of complaints, but they say no one has crashed or been injured because of the fault, which will only take about 30 minutes to put right.
Toyota and Honda Recalls
Toyota has had well-documented with a variety of issues requiring recalls of many of their models. More recently, however, more than half a million Honda’s were recalled to fix a problem with the headlight switch.
Honda say that owners of 554,000 CR-V’s made between 2002 and 2004, and all 2003 Pilots are entitled to a free inspection and repair, if necessary, to the wiring of a headlight switch which has been known to result in the loss of low-beam headlights. While Honda also claim that no collisions or injuries have been reported as a direct result of this defect, a defective auto injury lawyer claimed that headlight failure could easily result in catastrophic collisions causing serious injury or death.
More Recalls – A Prevalent Problem
In spite of the millions spent on car designs and the highly automated nature of their construction, it’s hard to understand how most manufacturers have had to recall vehicles for a variety of reasons, including potentially lethal defects. Yet recalls are far more common than you might think. Just some of the most recent examples include:
- On March 13 of this year, Volvo recalled more than 2,700 new S60 and XC60 models, which had received an over-application of an incorrectly mixed underbody coating, which could lead to rigid, icicle-like protrusions hanging from the car’s undercarriage.
- The previous month, Volvo had to recall more than 17,000 brand new S60, SC60, S80 and XC70’s, because the seat wire harness under the front seat may not have been properly attached. When seats are moved, the harness could get pulled and disconnect.
- Nissan has been forced to issue an inordinate number of recall notices. Vehicles and their problems include:
- o More than 8,100 Infiniti M45’s, made in 2003 and 2004, which have a potential circuit board problem that could cause the fuel gauge to read higher than the amount of fuel in the vehicle
- o In late February, Nissan recalled 23,531 2011-2012 Quests. Because of a software programming problem, when the car is moving at a slow speed or idling while facing downhill and the tank is less than a quarter full, the engine could stall.
- o The 2003 to 2005 Infiniti Q45 was recalled to modify a faulty wiring connector for the seat-mounted airbag which could result in the side airbag not deploying in the event of a side-on collision.
- o Almost 80,000 2011 and 2012 Nissan Juke, Infiniti QX and Infiniti M were recalled to replace fuel pressure sensors that were not tightened to the correct specifications.
- Also in February, just under 3,000 2012 Murano and Rogue Nissans, still in dealer inventories, were recalled to activate all tire pressure monitoring systems.
- A total of 976 2012 Nissan Altima and Versas had to have one or both side curtain air bag modules replaced.
- Still in the current year, 36,608 brand new Versa models with automatic transmissions needed shifter knobs or assemblies replaced. Without the fix being carried out, the vehicles could be shifted out of the park position without the brake pedal being depressed.
Toyota also issued three recalls, for flaws including problems with airbags becoming deactivated, brake light failures, difficulties shifting the vehicles out of park, and total starting failures. Additional problems included incorrect propellants being used in air bag assemblies which could cause side airbags or curtains not to deploy.
Subaru was forced to recall 275,000 2009 to 2012 Foresters to replace defective rear center seat belt assemblies, which in some cases did not permit the secure attachment of child restraints.
Other manufacturers to issue recalls just over the past three months include Ford, Chrysler, GM, Porsche and Dodge.
Clearly, car manufacturers have considerable difficulty getting all aspects of vehicle assembly correct, in spite of the multiple millions of dollars spent on research and development. Recalls are necessary to put inherent flaws right, no matter when they come. However, defects with the very features that are meant to keep drivers and passengers safe can result in serious injuries or death.
When a vehicle is properly maintained, brakes should never fail, steering assemblies should never fail, air bags should properly deploy in the event of a collision, and headlights should turn on and off without any problems. If you or a member of your family has been injured because the car you were in was defective in any way, you should not have to bear the financial consequences. You should also be compensated for your injuries.
Car manufacturers can and should be held responsible, and to take them on, you should think about seeking the help of an experienced defective auto injury lawyer. They understand the many laws and regulations around car manufacturing, and they can explain to you your rights, as well as the advisability of proceeding with a lawsuit. They can give you a good idea of the kind of compensation you can expect, and they will guide you through the entire process.