Hundreds of thousands of recalled GM cars may never get fixed

Despite all of the national publicity and Congressional hearings, General Motors may never fix all of the roughly 2.6 million vehicles involved in its ignition switch recall. The automaker may never get the chance – many owners simply don't have recalled vehicles serviced, regardless of the danger.

Since the automaker announced the first recall, it took months for Delphi to have enough improved parts on hand to supply them to dealers. With parts in place, GM's repairs were scheduled to begin on April 7. The company isn't discussing specific data on the number of vehicles repaired so far. "We're on track," said GM spokesperson Jim Cain to Autoblog about its progress. "Every day, parts availability improves."

However, there still could be hundreds of thousands of affected vehicles without the repair on the road in the coming years. According to a report by CNN Money, GM generally sees recall rates of 80 percent of cars within a year and 85 percent within two years. This is higher than the industry average of about 66 percent of models actually getting serviced. But even if 85 percent of them are repaired, it means about 390,000 cars on the road will still be left in need of the fix.

There are many reasons why an affected vehicle might not be repaired. Some people don't think they have the time to take their car in, despite the fact that GM struck a deal with several rental car agencies to ensure owners a loaner vehicle while the affected models were being fixed. It can also be hard to track down owners of older vehicles for recalls. The company might be trying to fix these cars for a long time to come.

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