According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration notice, the safety problem stems from an installation problem at a supplier, which may have caused the tire bead to become pinched between the steel wheel and the mounting equipment. As a result, tire beads may have been damaged, which could result in a loss of pressure, a condition that could lead to an increased accident risk, or at least an increased risk of being stranded and late for work.
Honda spokesperson Chris Martin tells Autoblog, "Only about 1,800 of that 9,800 have been sold because we caught it so quickly. The majority of them were in transit or unsold at dealers."
The recall only affects LX models built between November 26, 2013 and January 21 2014. LX is the Civic's entry-level trim now that the DX model has been discontinued, and as such, it typically makes up around 30 percent of the model's sales, notes Martin. Higher trim levels are fitted with alloy wheels and are not affected by this safety campaign.
While experts don't recommend replacing individual tires due to different wear patterns having adverse affects on a vehicle's performance, Martin says that these vehicles are so new that Honda doesn't anticipate any problems with individual tire substitution. "This is such a recent thing that I doubt there is a significant amount of tire wear," he says. The automaker is also endeavoring to replace the tires in question with exactly the same OEM tire fitment, so Honda says no issues will be created by different tread patterns or performance characteristics.
03/29/2014 - TORRANCE, Calif. Honda will voluntarily recall 9,817 model-year 2014 Civic LX vehicles in the United States to inspect the originally installed tires for a tear in the tire bead. If an original tire is found to have a torn bead, the tire will be replaced. The tire inspection and, if necessary, replacement, will be completed free of charge at any Honda dealership.
During a supplier's assembly of the tires onto the wheels, the tires may have been pinched between the assembly equipment and the vehicle's steel wheel rims, creating a tear. A tear in the bead of the tire could result in rapid air loss in the tire, making the vehicle more difficult to maneuver and increasing the risk of a crash. This issue was discovered during factory quality checks, and Honda is not aware of any related customer complaints, crashes or injuries. Since this defect was quickly discovered at the factory, most of the vehicles included in the recall have not yet been sold and will be repaired by dealers before sale.
Honda is announcing this recall to encourage all owners that did purchase an affected vehicle to take it to an authorized dealer as soon as they receive notification of this recall from Honda. Mailed notification to customers will begin in late-March to early-April, 2014. In addition to contacting customers by mail, at that time, owners of these vehicles will be able to determine if their vehicles require repair by going to www.recalls.honda.com or by calling (800) 999-1009, and selecting option
Report Receipt Date: MAR 10, 2014
NHTSA Campaign Number: 14V109000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 9,816
Manufacturer: Honda (American Honda Motor Co.)
American Honda Motor Co., Inc. (Honda) is recalling certain model year 2014 Honda Civic LX vehicles manufactured November 26, 2013, through January 21, 2014. In the affected vehicles, during mounting of the tires, the tire bead may have gotten pinched between the assembly equipment and the steel wheel rims, resulting in damage to the tire.
The tire damage could cause the tire to lose air, increasing the risk of a crash.
Honda will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and replace any damaged tire, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin on March 28, 2014. Owners may contact Honda at 1-800-999-1009. Honda's number for this recall is JD8.
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.