According to The New York Times, over 50 owners of GM vehicles have reported instances of stuck or seized steering after driving long distances without moving the wheel. One owner complained to NHTSA that the "locked" steering of their 2013 Buick Verano caused a collision with a concrete barrier in a construction zone.
Along with the 2013 to 2014 model year Verano sedans, Chevrolet Cruze and Malibu sedans are also affected. Considering the popularity of those models, GM needs to have a reason for not issuing a recall, right?
"Based on a very low rate of occurrence – ranging from less than one half to less than two incidents per thousand vehicles – and the fact that the condition is remedied when the wheel is turned, GM determined this was not a safety issue," spokesman Alan Adler told The Times.
The company has, however, issued a technical service bulletin for owners that complain of the problem. The fix is nothing more than a software update that is covered for 10 years or 150,000 miles from new.
NHTSA cited GM's actions, along with descriptions of the problems from customers, in its decision not to issue a recall, with spokeswoman Catherine Howden saying, "the symptoms described would be a brief, perceptible change in steering feel that has little to no effect on the driver's ability to safely steer the vehicle."
"When terms like 'notchy,' 'stick,' 'slip' or 'feel' are used, it does not indicate a meaningful increase in steering effort," Howden told The Times via email.
What do you think? Is GM in the wrong here? Should there be a recall, or is the issue so limited as to not warrant one? Have your say in Comments.