During manufacturing, the antenna might have been produced with "critically weak terminal connectivity." If being cycled on and off often or used continuously, these faulty examples can overheat, leading to a fire in the driver's side rear pillar. According to the company, "less than 1 percent of the recalled vehicles are expected to have the condition."
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (in a PDF), the fix is a reflash for the ATS' Electronic Climate Control module that automatically turns on the rear defogger when the engine starts. In addition, 2013 models keep the system on continuously at low temperatures at highway speeds and this is also being disabled in the update. The changes are meant to cycle the coil less often, but owners can still turn it on manually.
General Motors is recalling approximately 96,145 2013-16 model year ATS sedans in the U.S. Some of these vehicles may have been manufactured with critically weak terminal connectivity in the coil antenna module, which powers the rear defogger system. If the module has the condition and is subjected to excessive cycling or continuous operation, it may overheat and a fire may develop inside the rear pillar on the driver's side of the vehicle. Less than 1 percent of the recalled vehicles are expected to have the condition. GM is aware of four fires but no injuries, fatalities or crashes. Including Canada, Mexico and exports, the total population of the recall is approximately 119,339.
RECALL Subject : Rear Defogger Coil Antenna Module may Overheat
Report Receipt Date: SEP 03, 2015
NHTSA Campaign Number: 15V558000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 96,145
All Products Associated with this Recall
Vehicle Make Model Model Year(s)
CADILLAC ATS 2013-2016
Manufacturer: General Motors LLC
General Motors LLC (GM) is recalling certain model year 2013-2016 Cadillac ATS sedan vehicles manufactured April 23, 2012, to September 2, 2015. In the affected vehicles, the coil antenna module that powers the rear defogger system may generate excessive heat due to excessive cycling or continuous operation.
If the coil antenna generates excessive heat, there is an increased risk of a fire.
GM will notify owners, and dealers will update the Electronic Climate Control module to remove the automatic rear defogger "on" function, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. Owners may contact Cadillac customer service at 1-800-458-8006. GM's number for this recall is 15299.
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.