General Motors isn't letting an ignition-switch problem grow into a massive scandal again. The automaker is recalling about 3,300 North American trucks and SUVs. They are: the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra and the 2015 Chevy Suburban and Chevy Tahoe, as well as 2015 model heavy-duty pickups, the Detroit News reports, citing an Associated Press story. The issue appears to have been caught fairly quickly.
In this case, the keys can get stuck in the "start" position and then slip to "accessory" if bumped. This is because the ignition lock gears have an outer diameter that's larger than the specifications allow. When that happens the engine shuts off, and the driver loses assistance to the steering and brakes. The airbags might also be affected. The vehicles get a new ignition-lock housing to fix the problem.
According to the Detroit News, an employee who experienced the problem with the switch discovered the issue, and this person then let officials at the automaker know as part of the Speak Up for Safety program. A total of five reports of the fault were discovered. However, there are no cases of injuries or crashes.
The claims to the automaker's resolution program eventually tallied that GM's previous ignition switch problem included 124 deaths and 275 injuries. The company also had to recall millions of vehicles and pay significant fines to the US government.
General Motors is recalling 3,073 full-size trucks from the 2014 and 2015 model years in the U.S. Some of these vehicles may have an ignition lock actuator gear with an outer diameter that exceeds specifications, which may make turning the ignition key difficult. The ignition key could get stuck in the "start" position. This may be more likely at higher interior ambient temperatures. If the vehicle is driven with the key stuck in the "start" position, and the vehicle experiences a significant jarring event or the vehicle's interior temperature cools, the ignition lock cylinder could move out of the "start" position, rotate past the "run" position, and move into the "accessory" position, leading to loss of power steering assist, power brakes and potentially air bag deployment in certain crashes. Dealers will replace the ignition lock housing.
The affected vehicles are the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado LD, and GMC Sierra LD models and 2015 Chevrolet Silverado HD, Suburban, Tahoe, and 2015 GMC Sierra HD. GM is aware of five shutoffs but no crashes, injuries or fatalities related to this condition. Including Canada, Mexico and exports, the total recall population is 3,296.
Transport Canada Recall # 2015458
Recall Date 2015/10/08
Notification Type Safety Mfr
Manufacturer Recall Number 15573
Units Affected The number of vehicles or components affected by the recall. 138
Category Light Truck & Van
On certain vehicles, a defect in the ignition lock actuator may make turning the ignition key difficult or cause the key to get stuck in the "start" position. This may be more likely to occur at higher interior ambient temperatures. If the vehicle is driven with the key stuck in the "start" position, and the vehicle experiences a significant jarring event or the vehicle's interior temperature cools, the ignition key could move out of the "start" position, rotate past the "run" position, and move into the "accessory" position, causing the engine to shut off. This would result in a loss of motive power and affect power steering and power brake system function, which could increase the risk of a crash causing injury and/or damage to property. The timing of the key movement out of the "run" position, relative to the activation of the sensing algorithm in a crash event, may also result in the airbags not deploying in a subsequent collision, increasing the risk of injury.
Correction: Dealers will replace the ignition lock housing.
Make Model Model Year(s) Affected
CHEVROLET SILVERADO 2014 2015
GMC SIERRA 2014 2015