General Motors recently announced two recalls involving more than 100,000 vehicles because of defects that pose driving hazards. The action comes as the automaker continues to deal with legal and regulatory fallout from an ignition key defect that led to the recall of about 2.6 million small cars earlier this year.
The latest recalls affect:
- 56,214 Saturn Aura vehicles from model years 2007 and 2008. The company said the transmission shift cable may fracture, which could prevent a driver from shifting into “park” or from removing the ignition key. If a vehicle is not in park, it can roll and injure drivers and passengers trying to exit it.
- 52,000 sport-utility vehicles (SUVs) for a software flaw that makes fuel gauges inaccurate. The models include the 2014 Chevy Traverse, GMC Acadia and Buick Enclave – all popular SUVs. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said the faulty software is dangerous because it can cause a vehicle to run out of fuel and stop or stall abruptly. The agency warned that the problem increases the risk of an auto crash.
The problems are among a series of GM recalls that have affected 4.8 million vehicles this year. Mechanical and software issues in GM vehicles have been causing fatal accidents, injuries and financial losses to consumers who purchased cars equipped with flawed components – both mechanical and digital.
The company faces a number of lawsuits filed by customers and families of those killed or injured. It is also being investigated by the federal government regarding the length of time it took to act after learning that faulty ignition switches in its vehicles were causing cars to stall unexpectedly. The faulty ignition switches also caused airbags to malfunction and fail to deploy.
Plaintiffs in suits involving the faulty ignition switches are seeking damages reaching $10 billion.