UPDATE 1 - According to the drive.com.au blog, this is actually the second recall for the new Holdens. The first dealt with a fuel hose issue on some V8-powered cars.
New model launches have their ups and downs, and GM Holden is currently experiencing one of the "downs." A few months after the very high-profile debut of Holden's exciting new VE Commodores and their long-wheelbase siblings, the WM Statesman and Caprice, the automaker is issuing a recall on the handsome new sedans. It stems from a possible issue with the rear seat belt buckles that applies to 13,000 of the cars in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
In their recall statement, Holden explains that their supplier informed them of a scenario in which the buckle's internal spring could have been bent during the manual assembly process. This, in turn, could potentially cause the unit to not latch properly. Said supplier has since adopted an automated assembly process and taken full responsibility for the possible problem and the associated changes made to their manufacturing process.
No incidents involving buckle failure have been reported, and Holden will notify owners of the issue in writing. The automaker will replace all the back seat belt buckles in affected cars. Any overseas readers who might be affected and want to know more can read GM Holden's full statement after the jump.
[Source: GM Holden]
STATEMENT RE: GM HOLDEN RECALL
GM Holden has issued a safety recall for VE Commodore, WM Statesman and Caprice, involving around 13,000 vehicles.
The recall is in relation to a potential issue regarding rear seat belt buckles.
No customer cases have been reported but Holden is taking this action on advice from the relevant buckle supplier after the issue was detected during routine testing at the Holden Proving Ground.
The supplier has advised there is potential for the rear seat belt buckles' internal spring, which operates the internal latch plate, to be bent during manual assembly of the buckles. In the unlikely event that this occurs, the tongue latch plate may not fully engage which may allow the belt to unlatch.
The supplier has modified assembly to an automated process and acknowledged full responsibility for the rework activity.
The recall involves a total of 12,830 VE and WM vehicles (with tag numbers between L563891 and L859064 ) sold in three markets. They are:
Australia - 11,584 (including 452 HSV vehicles)
New Zealand - 1,199 (including 123 HSV vehicles)
South Africa - 47
All customers with vehicles within this range will be informed in writing by Holden and all three rear seat belt buckles with be replaced at no cost to the customer.
GM Holden Executive Director Engineering, Tony Hyde, today said Holden erred on the side of safety and recalled the vehicles.
"It's consistently been Holden's approach to quickly respond to any concern," Mr Hyde said.
"The safety of our customers is always a high priority.
"We take customer safety very seriously and our customers would expect us to be vigilant.
"We have received no reports of this issue appearing in customer cars but we are taking this action regardless."
Any customer with concerns about the recall should call Holden Customer Assistance Centre on 1800 632 826 or the service department of any Holden dealership.