It’s been a rough couple of years for General Motors Company (NYSE:GM). According to documents released by federal safety regulators on Wednesday, August 13th, GM has yet another safety recall issue to deal with, this time with the beleaguered automaker recalling several models of SUVs for a third time to repair or replace power window switches that can potentially overheat and catch fire.
This latest GM recall involves almost about 190,000 North American vehicles, largely 2006 and 2007 models. The Chevrolet TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainer, Isuzu Ascender and Saab 97-X are all included in the recall. The vehicles were recalled as one of six recalls announced by the firm on June 30 that covered 7.6 million vehicles. Recalls for the same problem were issued in 2012, but only in limited areas as the problem was thought to be related to salt-water corrosion.
General Motors said letters to owners concerning the SUV recall should be mailed soon. Owners will also receive a followup letter later this year notifying them that the parts are available to fix the vehicles.
The problem is considered serious enough that General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) is telling customers to park the recalled SUVs outdoors until they are repaired because there is a potential for fires even when the vehicle is not operating or left unattended.
Delay until parts are ready
Moreover, it looks like the SUVs will be parked outside for a while. That’s because replacement parts won’t be available until October at the earliest, according to the company. General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) also told dealers to stop selling the SUVs as used cars until they have been repaired.
Earlier General Motors recall problems
Scores of safety recalls within the last couple of years have led to a major crisis at GM, including the appointment of new CEO Mary Barra last year. The recall crisis began with the delayed recall of 2.6 million older small cars to fix faulty ignition switches that resulted in injuries and fatalities. The recall crisis has mushroomed as the firm has issued a record 60 recalls in 2014 involving almost 29 million vehicles.
General Motors has historically been reluctant to issue recalls, and has had a reputation of using lower-cost fixes for safety problems. The automaker was fined $35 million by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for lapses in reporting the ignition switch problems, which can be connected to at least 13 deaths.
Following the avalanche of bad PR surrounding the ignition switch recall, GM undertook a company-wide safety review, created a new global safety chief and pledged to recall cars as soon as possible when problems cropped up.