High MPG trike maker may be derailed by new federal government ruling.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Drunk drivers kill approximately 11,000 people every year in the United States, a level of carnage that remains stubbornly high despite enormous resources expended by law enforcement officers and safety advocates intent on stopping them. One possible solution now lies in the palms of their hands.
Jeep is still working to install trailer hitches on recalled 1993-1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee and 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty to make them safer in rear collisions. The company says it is working to notify owners in new ways to get them to bring their vehicles in, but fix rates are reportedly low and deaths are still being reported in unrepaired recalled vehicles.
Drivers in the US might be stuck with quite a wait to get their vehicles repaired under the Takata airbag inflator recall. As things stand now, the Japanese supplier could need as long as two years to produce enough replacement parts to service every affected model in America. If the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is successful in making the campaign nationwide, then that timeline could grow even longer.
Following the significant outcry surrounding the General Motors and Takata airbag safety crises this year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration seems to be taking a much more aggressive role in pushing owners to repair their recalled vehicles. In the agency's latest move, it's urging Jeep drivers to get their models fixed. Acting NHTSA administrator David Friedman even sent a letter to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne pressing him to get more of the SUVs fixed.
The justification behind limiting the Takata airbag recall only to certain high humidity areas in the US always seemed somewhat dubious. The US Department of Transportation apparently agrees because in a detailed statement posted on the website for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the feds are requesting nationwide action. At the same time, the government's investigation into Takata and the affected automakers is deepening.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is issuing two, separate recalls covering a total of 33,443 examples in the US of the 2014 Ram ProMaster, 2014 Jeep Wrangler, 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan and 2014 Chrysler Town & Country because of potential problems with the tire pressure monitoring system in the vehicles.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Department of Transportation are taking the unusual step of issuing a followup press release urging owners of certain recalled vehicles "to act immediately" to fix their cars and trucks. The problem in question concerns the repair campaigns for rupturing Takata airbag inflators issued in June and covers a long list of models from Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Acura, Mazda, BMW, Nissan, Infiniti, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Oldsmobile and Po
Suzuki is known for having a pair of very capable sportbikes in its GSX-R750 and GSXR-1000, but now the Japanese company is recalling 23,073 of them in the US to replace the chain adjuster. Specifically, the campaign affects 2011-2014 model year versions of the 750 and the 2009-2014 1000.
Volkswagen is recalling about 1.1 million vehicles in China and North America in a newly announced campaign affecting the rear suspensions on some models. For the US, the action covers about 442,265 vehicles, including 400,602 examples of its 2011-2013 Jetta and 41,663 units of the 2012-2013 Beetle and Beetle Convertible. According to Reuters, the recall affects a further 126,000 vehicles in Canada and about 581,090 in China, including related market-specific models like the Sagitar.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is opening an investigation into the 2010-2012 Ford Fusion, Fusion Hybrid and Lincoln MKZ, the 2012 MKZ Hybrid and 2011 Mercury Milan because the agency has hundreds of complaints of electric power steering failure in these models.