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Found 51 results

  1. Honda Has A Lower-Cost Civic Type R in the Cards

    The only way you can purchase a Honda Civic Type R is the fully loaded Touring trim with adaptive dampers, navigation, LED headlights, etc. Possibly, you might have to pay a 'market adjustment' price - i.e. a dealer adding a few grand to the price to make a quick buck. But 2018 could see Honda introduce a base version of the Type R. The Truth About Cars uncovered NHTSA certification papers filed by American Honda for the 2018 model year. The papers reveal two Civic Type R models, 'Type R' and 'Touring'. Both models have the same engine code - K20C1 which corresponds to the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder. As we reported back in June, Honda is considering adding more Civic Type R variants to "broaden the audience and keep sales fresh." One way to that is to introduce a lower-cost model. Honda already sells one in other markets that lose out on the navigation system, parking sensors, and LED lighting. Source: The Truth About Cars
  2. The only way you can purchase a Honda Civic Type R is the fully loaded Touring trim with adaptive dampers, navigation, LED headlights, etc. Possibly, you might have to pay a 'market adjustment' price - i.e. a dealer adding a few grand to the price to make a quick buck. But 2018 could see Honda introduce a base version of the Type R. The Truth About Cars uncovered NHTSA certification papers filed by American Honda for the 2018 model year. The papers reveal two Civic Type R models, 'Type R' and 'Touring'. Both models have the same engine code - K20C1 which corresponds to the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder. As we reported back in June, Honda is considering adding more Civic Type R variants to "broaden the audience and keep sales fresh." One way to that is to introduce a lower-cost model. Honda already sells one in other markets that lose out on the navigation system, parking sensors, and LED lighting. Source: The Truth About Cars View full article
  3. G. David Felt - Staff Writer Alternative Energy - www.cheersandgears.com NHTSA Probes Ford Explorer for Carbon Monoxide Exposure. From 2011 to 2017 over 450 official complaints have been filed with the NHTSA about carbon monoxide gas entering the cab of the Ford Explorer. Ford is stated to have settled lawsuits in Florida over this issue. In 2012 Ford issued a technical bulletin stating to use sealer and undercoating on explorers as they come in for service to address this issue. In 2014 this was combined with a software flash upgrade. Ford says there is no concern or safety risk, customers are encouraged to bring in their explorers for review by the dealership. NHTSA's investigation document is showing that owners are reporting little or no improvement after both service bulletins are applied. According to a CBS story, owners are also stating a strong sulfur or rotten egg smell continually comes into the cab. USA Today Story
  4. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles isn't out of the dog house when it comes to vehicles rolling away. A few months after issuing a recall on a number of models equipped with the stubby transmission lever for rolling away, NHTSA is investigating models equipped with the rotary knob gear selector for the same problem. The investigation is looking at the 2013–2016 Ram 1500 and the 2014–2016 Dodge Durango which have the rotary knob selector. NHTSA has gotten 43 complaints about these models moving away. Out of the 43 complaints, 25 have resulted in crashes and another 9 resulted in injuries. NHTSA also says that 34 complaints said the vehicle was moving while in park. FCA said it is cooperating with the investigation. In the meantime, FCA and NHTSA are urging owners to engage the parking brake Source: NHTSA, Reuters
  5. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles isn't out of the dog house when it comes to vehicles rolling away. A few months after issuing a recall on a number of models equipped with the stubby transmission lever for rolling away, NHTSA is investigating models equipped with the rotary knob gear selector for the same problem. The investigation is looking at the 2013–2016 Ram 1500 and the 2014–2016 Dodge Durango which have the rotary knob selector. NHTSA has gotten 43 complaints about these models moving away. Out of the 43 complaints, 25 have resulted in crashes and another 9 resulted in injuries. NHTSA also says that 34 complaints said the vehicle was moving while in park. FCA said it is cooperating with the investigation. In the meantime, FCA and NHTSA are urging owners to engage the parking brake Source: NHTSA, Reuters View full article
  6. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) has opened an investigation into a fatal crash dealing with Tesla's Autopilot system. In a statement given to Reuters, NHTSA said the driver of a 2015 Tesla Model S was killed while the vehicle was in the Autopilot mode. The crash took place on May 7th in Williston, Florida when a tractor-trailer was making a left turn across a divided highway. Tesla in a lengthy blog post said: "neither Autopilot nor the driver noticed the white side of the tractor trailer against a brightly lit sky, so the brake was not applied." The Model S drove underneath the trailer with the bottom making contact with the windshield. The Verge reports the driver was 40-year old Joshua Brown who filmed various videos of his Model S. One of the videos on his YouTube channel showed his Model avoiding an accident with a bucket truck. NHTSA's investigation will look the design and performance of the Model S and its various components, including Autopilot. It should be noted this is standard practice for NHTSA to investigate any crash where the vehicle's system could be at fault. Tesla's blog post says this is first known fatality in over 130 million miles since Autopilot was turned on. Autopilot has been a source of controversy since Tesla rolled it out last year. Numerous videos of Model S owners filming themselves in dangerous situations and sometimes showing the system not working caused Tesla to make some drastic changes. These included limiting the types of road the system could be turned on and making checks to see if there was someone sitting in the driver's seat. Tesla has said time and time again that Autopilot is a beta feature and that the driver needed to pay attention. "Autopilot is getting better all the time, but it is not perfect and still requires the driver to remain alert," Tesla said in their post. "It is important to note that Tesla disables Autopilot by default and requires explicit acknowledgement that the system is new technology and still in a public beta phase before it can be enabled. When drivers activate Autopilot, the acknowledgment box explains, among other things, that Autopilot “is an assist feature that requires you to keep your hands on the steering wheel at all times," and that "you need to maintain control and responsibility for your vehicle” while using it. " Nevertheless, this crash puts autonomous technologies and Tesla under some intense scrutiny. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), The Detroit News, Reuters, Tesla, The Verge
  7. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued an urgent warning to owners of certain 2001 to 2003 Honda and Acura model to stop driving them due to these models being equipped with Takata airbags. Lab tests done by NHTSA revealed that the airbag inflator in these vehicles have a 50 percent chance of the bag rupturing, causing metal shards to enter the interior and possibly injuring or even killing a person. "With as high as a 50 percent chance of a dangerous air bag inflator rupture in a crash, these vehicles are unsafe and need to be repaired immediately. Folks should not drive these vehicles unless they are going straight to a dealer to have them repaired immediately, free of charge," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. The vehicles involved include, 2001-2002 Honda Accord 2001-2002 Honda Civic 2002 Honda CR-V 2002 Honda Odyssey 2003 Honda Pilot 2002-2003 Acura 3.2 TL 2003 Acura 3.2CL According to NHTSA, there 313,000 vehicles that need to have their airbags replaced. One of the main causes for the rupturing is moisture getting inside the inflator. Vehicles in high humid areas such as Florida are susceptible to this. In a statement, Honda agreed with NHTSA's findings and urged owners to get their vehicles to a dealer as soon as possible. Source: Reuters, NHTSA Press Release is on Page 2 Page 1 of 2 1 2 → Last » Click here to view the article
  8. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued an urgent warning to owners of certain 2001 to 2003 Honda and Acura model to stop driving them due to these models being equipped with Takata airbags. Lab tests done by NHTSA revealed that the airbag inflator in these vehicles have a 50 percent chance of the bag rupturing, causing metal shards to enter the interior and possibly injuring or even killing a person. "With as high as a 50 percent chance of a dangerous air bag inflator rupture in a crash, these vehicles are unsafe and need to be repaired immediately. Folks should not drive these vehicles unless they are going straight to a dealer to have them repaired immediately, free of charge," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. The vehicles involved include, 2001-2002 Honda Accord 2001-2002 Honda Civic 2002 Honda CR-V 2002 Honda Odyssey 2003 Honda Pilot 2002-2003 Acura 3.2 TL 2003 Acura 3.2CL According to NHTSA, there 313,000 vehicles that need to have their airbags replaced. One of the main causes for the rupturing is moisture getting inside the inflator. Vehicles in high humid areas such as Florida are susceptible to this. In a statement, Honda agreed with NHTSA's findings and urged owners to get their vehicles to a dealer as soon as possible. Source: Reuters, NHTSA Press Release is on Page 2 NHTSA: New test data on particular subset of Takata air bag inflators shows substantially higher risk NHTSA calls on news media and public to assist in finding unrepaired high-risk vehicles WASHINGTON – New test data on a particular subset of defective Takata air bag inflators in certain model-year 2001-2003 Honda and Acura vehicles show a far higher risk of ruptures during air bag deployment, prompting an urgent call from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to ensure that unrepaired vehicles in this population are found and fixed before they cause further injuries or fatalities. “With as high as a 50 percent chance of a dangerous air bag inflator rupture in a crash, these vehicles are unsafe and need to be repaired immediately,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Folks should not drive these vehicles unless they are going straight to a dealer to have them repaired immediately, free of charge.” The higher-risk inflators are in certain 2001-2003 Honda and Acura vehicles: 2001-2002 Honda Civic 2001-2002 Honda Accord 2002-2003 Acura TL 2002 Honda CR-V 2002 Honda Odyssey 2003 Acura CL 2003 Honda Pilot The air bag inflators in these particular vehicles contain a manufacturing defect which greatly increases the potential for dangerous rupture when a crash causes the air bag to deploy. Ruptures are far more likely in inflators in vehicles that have spent significant periods of time in areas of high absolute humidity—particularly Florida, Texas, other parts of the Gulf Coast, and Southern California. Testing of the inflators from these vehicles show rupture rates as high as 50 percent in a laboratory setting. The vehicles in question were recalled between 2008 and 2011. Honda has reported that more than 70 percent of this higher-risk population of vehicles has already been repaired, but approximately 313,000 vehicles with this very dangerous defect remain unrepaired. The risk posed by the airbag inflators in these vehicles is grave, and it is critical they be repaired now to avoid more deaths and serious injuries. NHTSA and Honda are asking for the news media and public’s assistance to find the remaining unrepaired vehicles. Drivers of these vehicles should immediately visit SaferCar.gov to check whether their vehicle has any outstanding safety recalls. Those that do should contact their nearest dealer to schedule a no-cost immediate repair. Replacement parts for these vehicles are available immediately. “The air bag inflators in this particular group of vehicles pose a grave danger to drivers and passengers that must be fixed right away,” said NHTSA Administrator Dr. Mark Rosekind. "Drivers should visit SaferCar.gov or contact their local dealer to check whether their vehicle is affected. If it is, they should have the vehicle repaired immediately for free at an authorized dealer. We commend Honda for taking additional actions to get these vehicles repaired.” Though the vehicles are already under recall, NHTSA ordered Takata to perform additional ballistic testing following recent reports of ruptures. Eight of the 10 confirmed U.S. fatalities due to Takata ruptures — including the most recent in Fort Bend County, Texas — were in this population of vehicles. Honda has committed to immediately taking additional actions to enhance their efforts to find and fix recalled vehicles. Honda will provide additional information about their efforts. NHTSA has also directed Honda to report weekly on the progress of vehicle repairs. NHTSA is also expanding its own direct consumer outreach, including a paid media campaign and a series of outreach events in high-risk areas this summer. NHTSA has also engaged the vehicle insurance industry to help locate the unremedied vehicles.
  9. A historic commitment was announced today by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and twenty automakers to make automatic emergency braking (AEB) standard by 2022. “It’s an exciting time for vehicle safety. By proactively making emergency braking systems standard equipment on their vehicles, these 20 automakers will help prevent thousands of crashes and save lives. It’s a win for safety and a win for consumers," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. This agreement comes as a result of mounting evidence that AEB systems can cut rear-end crashes by as much as 40 percent. Back in September, NHTSA and IIHS announced that ten automakers - Audi, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Volvo - agreed to have AEB systems standard on all their vehicles in the future. Since then, the various groups have been working out various details of the agreement. Plus, another ten automakers - Fiat Chrysler, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia, Maserati, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Porsche, and Subaru - have added their names. All told, this group represents about 99 percent of U.S. light-vehicle sales. The key thing to keep in mind is this isn't a government mandate. It is agreement between the between automakers and the government, something NHTSA says will cause widespread adoption three years sooner than a formal rule. The agreement will come into effect in two phases. Phase 1 will require all vehicles with a gross weight under 8,500 pounds to have AEB by September 1, 2022. Phase 2 requires vehicles with a gross weight between 8,501 and 10,000 pounds to have AEB by September 1, 2025. Source: NHTSA Press Release is on Page 2 U.S. DOT and IIHS announce historic commitment of 20 automakers to make automatic emergency braking standard on new vehicles Thursday, March 17, 2016 McLEAN, Va. – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety announced today a historic commitment by 20 automakers representing more than 99 percent of the U.S. auto market to make automatic emergency braking a standard feature on virtually all new cars no later than NHTSA’s 2022 reporting year, which begins Sept 1, 2022. Automakers making the commitment are Audi, BMW, FCA US LLC, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia, Maserati, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi Motors, Nissan, Porsche, Subaru, Tesla Motors Inc., Toyota, Volkswagen and Volvo Car USA. The unprecedented commitment means that this important safety technology will be available to more consumers more quickly than would be possible through the regulatory process. AEB systems help prevent crashes or reduce their severity by applying the brakes for the driver. The systems use on-vehicle sensors such as radar, cameras or lasers to detect an imminent crash, warn the driver and apply the brakes if the driver does not take sufficient action quickly enough. NHTSA estimates that the agreement will make AEB standard on new cars three years faster than could be achieved through the formal regulatory process. During those three years, according to IIHS estimates, the commitment will prevent 28,000 crashes and 12,000 injuries. “It’s an exciting time for vehicle safety. By proactively making emergency braking systems standard equipment on their vehicles, these 20 automakers will help prevent thousands of crashes and save lives,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “It’s a win for safety and a win for consumers." Based on mounting evidence that AEB effectively reduced crashes and injuries in the U.S. and around the world, NHTSA and IIHS issued a challenge to industry in September 2015 to encourage automakers to voluntarily make AEB a standard feature. A series of meetings followed to establish details of the commitment. “IIHS member companies strongly support the adoption of effective safety technologies,” said IIHS Board Chairman and CEO of American Family Insurance, Jack Salzwedel. “Deploying AEB on a wide scale will allow us to further evaluate the technology’s effectiveness and its impact on insurance losses, so that more insurers can explore offering discounts or lower premiums to consumers who choose AEB-equipped vehicles.” “We’re getting these safety systems into vehicles much faster than what would have been otherwise possible,” said NHTSA Administrator, Dr. Mark Rosekind. “A commitment of this magnitude is unprecedented, and it will bring more safety to more Americans sooner.” “The benefits of this commitment are far reaching,” said IIHS Executive Vice President and Chief Research Officer David Zuby. “From injuries and deaths averted to the recovery of productivity that would otherwise be lost in traffic jams caused by the crashes prevented. It also assures that all Americans will benefit from this technology.” “With roadway fatalities on the rise, the commitment made today has the potential to save more lives than almost anything else we can accomplish in the next six years," said Deborah A.P. Hersman, president and CEO of the National Safety Council, who attended today’s announcement. "Including all models in the agreement ensures that safety isn't for just those who can afford it." NHTSA and IIHS also announced that Consumer Reports will assist in monitoring automaker progress toward meeting the AEB commitment. Jake Fisher, Director of Auto Testing for Consumer Reports, said, “We have been calling on automakers to make automatic emergency braking standard in all new vehicles, and today is an important step toward reaching that goal. This proven technology is among the most promising safety advances we’ve seen since electronic stability control almost two decades ago. We look forward to working with NHTSA and IIHS to help put this plan into action and hold automakers accountable for their commitments.” Today’s commitment will make AEB standard on virtually all light-duty cars and trucks with a gross vehicle weight of 8,500 lbs. or less beginning no later than Sept. 1, 2022. AEB will be standard on virtually all trucks with a gross vehicle weight between 8,501 lbs. and 10,000 lbs. beginning no later than Sept. 1, 2025. As NHTSA continues its regulatory work in this area, NHTSA will track the progress industry is making towards its commitment. The commitment takes into account the evolution of AEB technology. It requires a level of functionality that is in line with research and crash data demonstrating that such systems are substantially reducing crashes, but does not stand in the way of improved capabilities that are just beginning to emerge. The performance measures are based on real world data showing that vehicles with this level of capability are avoiding crashes. To encourage further development of AEB technology, NHTSA will accelerate its research on more advanced AEB applications, including systems that reduce the risk of collisions with pedestrians. In December, NHTSA announced plans to rate AEB systems and other advanced technologies under its 5-Star Safety Ratings beginning in model year 2018.
  10. Back in 2011, the U.S. Transportation Department's Office of Inspector General (OIG) performed an audit into the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) after its handling of the Toyota unintended acceleration crisis. The OIG made ten recommendations on how NHTSA identifies and addresses safety defects such as developing a formal training program and documenting explanations as to why they have missed deadlines. Five years on, NHTSA hasn't put all of those recommendations into practice. According to Reuters, the OIG released a new audit showing the agency had not implemented all of the recommendations agreed upon in 2011 to help protect drivers. Out of the ten recommendations, NHTSA has only put three into practice. The audit showed that NHTSA had not implemented any sort of training for their employees to investigate possible defects. "As a result, (NHTSA's defects investigation) staff may not be sufficiently trained to identify and investigate potential vehicle defects, or ensure that vehicle manufacturers take prompt and effective action," the OIG states in the audit. The OIG also found NHTSA didn't document reasons as to why they delayed completing investigations in a timely fashion, along with retaining safety records. NHTSA spokesman Gordon Trowbridge tells Reuters the agency agrees with the recommendations and will apply all of them by June 30th. Source: Reuters, Office of Inspector General
  11. Not a pleasant day at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles as the company was handed a $70 Million fine by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for failing to report death and injury claims to regulators. Now this penalty comes from FCA admitting to NHTSA that it failed to provide Early Warning Report data to NHTSA over several years starting in 2003. Now this is required by the TREAD Act of 2000 where an automaker provides claims of death and injuries, warranty claims, consumer complaints and field reports of safety issues as a way to identify a possible defect. Automotive News reports that FCA has brought in a third-party to do an audit of its reporting failures. “FCA US LLC accepts these penalties and is revising its processes to ensure regulatory compliance. However, FCA US is confident that it identified and addressed all issues that arose during the relevant time period, using alternate data sources.” FCA said in a statement. This new fine is in addition to a $70 Million penalty that FCA agreed to pay in July to settle a probe by the U.S. government into a pattern of violations found in FCA’s handling of 23 recalls since 2009. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), NHTSA Press Release is on Page 2
  12. The U.S. Congress is voting on a new highway bill that if passed, would bring some much needed money and changes for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Automotive News reports the new bill, called Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act would be the first long-term highway plan in a decade. If passed, the bill would provide roughly $300 billion for roads, bridges, and mass-transit projects. The bill would also increase NHTSA's budget for defect investigations from $10 million a year to $30 million. But for NHTSA to get the increase in the budget, they would need to implement a number of reforms outlined by Transportation Department’s inspector general. Along with the increase in the defect investigation budget, FAST would some much-needed changes in how recalls and defects are dealt with. The maximum fine for safety violations will increase from $35 million to $105 million Employees who report on potentially dangerous safety violations will be rewarded If there is a financial penalty put on an automaker or supplier, a whistleblower could get up to 30 percent of the penalty Automakers will need to keep safety data for 10 years (up from the current 5) and provide part numbers for defective parts to NHTSA Dealers will be required to notify customers of an open recall Rental car companies will not be allowed to rent out vehicles that have an open recall States would be given funds to notify owners who renew their vehicle registration that a recall is due Currently, the bill has bipartisan support and the White House announced that President Obama would sign the bill if passed. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) Click here to view the article
  13. The U.S. Congress is voting on a new highway bill that if passed, would bring some much needed money and changes for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Automotive News reports the new bill, called Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act would be the first long-term highway plan in a decade. If passed, the bill would provide roughly $300 billion for roads, bridges, and mass-transit projects. The bill would also increase NHTSA's budget for defect investigations from $10 million a year to $30 million. But for NHTSA to get the increase in the budget, they would need to implement a number of reforms outlined by Transportation Department’s inspector general. Along with the increase in the defect investigation budget, FAST would some much-needed changes in how recalls and defects are dealt with. The maximum fine for safety violations will increase from $35 million to $105 million Employees who report on potentially dangerous safety violations will be rewarded If there is a financial penalty put on an automaker or supplier, a whistleblower could get up to 30 percent of the penalty Automakers will need to keep safety data for 10 years (up from the current 5) and provide part numbers for defective parts to NHTSA Dealers will be required to notify customers of an open recall Rental car companies will not be allowed to rent out vehicles that have an open recall States would be given funds to notify owners who renew their vehicle registration that a recall is due Currently, the bill has bipartisan support and the White House announced that President Obama would sign the bill if passed. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  14. he National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) have entered a consent agreement that will see FCA paying a record $105 million civil penalty after the Government investigated 23 different recalls into the company since 2009. “Today’s action holds Fiat Chrysler accountable for its past failures, pushes them to get unsafe vehicles repaired or off the roads and takes concrete steps to keep Americans safer going forward. This civil penalty puts manufacturers on notice that the department will act when they do not take their obligations to repair safety defects seriously,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. As part of the consent agreement, FCA admitted that it "failed to timely provide an effective remedy” in three recall campaigns, and that it failed to comply with “various reporting requirements” of U.S. laws governing recalls in a timely manner. The $105 million civil penalty is made up of a $70 million payment to NHTSA, $20 million to revamping their efforts in terms of safety, and $15 million in additional penalties if FCA doesn't meet the terms. Along with the penalty, FCA will also have to buy back more than 500,000 vehicles - mostly Ram trucks - due to defective suspension parts that could cause drivers to lose control. Also, owners of Jeep Grand Cherokee and Liberty SUVs with rear-mounted gas tanks will be able to trade their vehicles for above-market value or take a take a “financial incentive” to have a trailer hitch installed. The final part of the agreement will see FCA bring in a independent monitor that will monitor issues at the company for the next three years. "We are intent on rebuilding our relationship with NHTSA and we embrace the role of public safety advocate. Accordingly, FCA US has agreed to address certain industry objectives, such as identifying best practices for recall execution and researching obstacles that discourage consumers from responding to recall notices," FCA said in a statement. Source: The Detroit News, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Press Release is on Page 2 FCA US Reaches Consensual Resolution of NHTSA Investigation on 23 Recall Campaigns July 26, 2015 , London, UK - FCA US LLC (FCA US) today announced it has entered into a consent order with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) which resolves the issues raised by NHTSA with respect to FCA US’s execution of 23 recall campaigns in NHTSA’s Special Order issued to FCA US on May 22, 2015 and further addressed at a NHTSA public hearing held on July 2, 2015. The consent order includes an admission by FCA US that in three specified campaigns it had failed to timely provide an effective remedy, and that it did not timely comply with various reporting requirements under the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Pursuant to the consent order, FCA US has agreed to make a $70 million cash payment to NHTSA and to spend $20 million on industry and consumer outreach activities and incentives to enhance certain recall and service campaign completion rates. An additional $15 million payment will be payable by FCA US if it fails to comply with certain terms of the consent order. FCA US has also agreed to undertake specific actions to improve its recall execution. The consent order will be supervised by an independent monitor and will remain in place for three years subject to NHTSA’s right to extend for an additional year in the event of FCA US' noncompliance with the consent order. FCA US LLC Consent Order Response July 26, 2015 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - FCA US LLC acknowledges the admissions in its Consent Order with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. We also accept the resulting consequences with renewed resolve to improve our handling of recalls and re-establish the trust our customers place in us. We are intent on rebuilding our relationship with NHTSA and we embrace the role of public safety advocate. Accordingly, FCA US has agreed to address certain industry objectives, such as identifying best practices for recall execution and researching obstacles that discourage consumers from responding to recall notices.
  15. While General Motors has gotten most of the blame in the ignition switch fiasco, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) isn't getting away scot free. The New York Times reports that the Department of Transportation released two internal documents revealing a series of failings by NHTSA. One of those failings was the administration not paying sufficient attention to a Wisconsin state trooper’s report in 2007 which suggested that the ignition switch played a key role in a fatal accident. The reports go on to say that NHTSA didn't use their full power to hold GM accountable in terms of this problem. “There needs to be a complete overhaul of this failing agency. The results of this report are long overdue,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). NHTSA has begun to make a number of changes in light of these reports. They include, Put manufacturers “on notice” about potential defects as soon they identified any troubling cases. Institute a 'Risk Control' program that better aligns different sections of NHTSA and encourage more sharing Be monitored by a group of outside experts including former officials of the National Transportation Safety Board and NASA “The G.M. experience changed the culture here. What that means is challenge the information you’re getting, and challenge the assumptions you are pursuing,” said NHTSA administrator Mark R. Rosekind. Still some people believe NHTSA needs to go farther. “It still soft-pedals why they have gone from one defect crisis to another,” said Sean E. Kane of the consulting firm Safety Research and Strategies. “What is missing is any mention of the importance of transparency.” Source: The New York Times Click here to view the article
  16. While General Motors has gotten most of the blame in the ignition switch fiasco, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) isn't getting away scot free. The New York Times reports that the Department of Transportation released two internal documents revealing a series of failings by NHTSA. One of those failings was the administration not paying sufficient attention to a Wisconsin state trooper’s report in 2007 which suggested that the ignition switch played a key role in a fatal accident. The reports go on to say that NHTSA didn't use their full power to hold GM accountable in terms of this problem. “There needs to be a complete overhaul of this failing agency. The results of this report are long overdue,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). NHTSA has begun to make a number of changes in light of these reports. They include, Put manufacturers “on notice” about potential defects as soon they identified any troubling cases. Institute a 'Risk Control' program that better aligns different sections of NHTSA and encourage more sharing Be monitored by a group of outside experts including former officials of the National Transportation Safety Board and NASA “The G.M. experience changed the culture here. What that means is challenge the information you’re getting, and challenge the assumptions you are pursuing,” said NHTSA administrator Mark R. Rosekind. Still some people believe NHTSA needs to go farther. “It still soft-pedals why they have gone from one defect crisis to another,” said Sean E. Kane of the consulting firm Safety Research and Strategies. “What is missing is any mention of the importance of transparency.” Source: The New York Times
  17. Next month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will be holding a public hearing to probe Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' handling of 20 different recalls covering 11 million vehicles since 2013. The agency is concerned about the completion rates and other issues on these recalls. But FCA believes this hearing should be skipped. In a 19-page response to questions from NHTSA that was released yesterday, the company argues that its overall recall completion rate is "nearly the best in the industry, with 77 percent. The response goes onto state that they are compliant with existing regulations and are in the process of implementing new programs to improve their completion rate. FCA says their way “to review and identify with NHTSA input, and implement changes based on the learnings obviate the need for a hearing.” But NHTSA administrator Mark Rosekind tells The Detroit News that the hearing is still on. “Twenty recalls are a problem — 10 million vehicles. There’s a pattern here of things we’re concerned about. And they weren’t just little things — they were big things including major safety issues related to fire, door latches that could open up when people were driving. It’s not just, ‘Oh, they were late on something.’ If they didn’t start, it was late, it means all that time people are at risk. And they told us something different,” said Rosekind. Source: The Detroit News Click here to view the article
  18. Next month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will be holding a public hearing to probe Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' handling of 20 different recalls covering 11 million vehicles since 2013. The agency is concerned about the completion rates and other issues on these recalls. But FCA believes this hearing should be skipped. In a 19-page response to questions from NHTSA that was released yesterday, the company argues that its overall recall completion rate is "nearly the best in the industry, with 77 percent. The response goes onto state that they are compliant with existing regulations and are in the process of implementing new programs to improve their completion rate. FCA says their way “to review and identify with NHTSA input, and implement changes based on the learnings obviate the need for a hearing.” But NHTSA administrator Mark Rosekind tells The Detroit News that the hearing is still on. “Twenty recalls are a problem — 10 million vehicles. There’s a pattern here of things we’re concerned about. And they weren’t just little things — they were big things including major safety issues related to fire, door latches that could open up when people were driving. It’s not just, ‘Oh, they were late on something.’ If they didn’t start, it was late, it means all that time people are at risk. And they told us something different,” said Rosekind. Source: The Detroit News
  19. After months of pressure from the U.S. Government and a number of recalls from automakers, Japanese supplier Takata agreed to declare that its airbag inflators in nearly 34 million vehicles are defective. The announcement was made today by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx at a press conference. “Up until now Takata has refused to acknowledge that their airbags are defective, That changes today,” said Foxx. The problem with Takata's airbags deals with propellant exploding with too much force and sends dangerous metal fragments flying. This problem has been linked to 6 deaths and more than 100 injuries. Scarily, the root cause of the problem hasn't been found at this time - though officials link the problem to high humidity and moisture exposure. The Detroit News reports that Takata will announce that it has filed 4 defect reports with U.S. auto safety officials stating that 33.8 million vehicles have defective driver and passenger air bag inflators. This is double the amount vehicles already recalled by automakers since 2013. It could mean that this air bag problem could mark the largest U.S. recall of any consumer product, since the Tylenol poison scare in 1982. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), The Detroit News Click here to view the article
  20. After months of pressure from the U.S. Government and a number of recalls from automakers, Japanese supplier Takata agreed to declare that its airbag inflators in nearly 34 million vehicles are defective. The announcement was made today by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx at a press conference. “Up until now Takata has refused to acknowledge that their airbags are defective, That changes today,” said Foxx. The problem with Takata's airbags deals with propellant exploding with too much force and sends dangerous metal fragments flying. This problem has been linked to 6 deaths and more than 100 injuries. Scarily, the root cause of the problem hasn't been found at this time - though officials link the problem to high humidity and moisture exposure. The Detroit News reports that Takata will announce that it has filed 4 defect reports with U.S. auto safety officials stating that 33.8 million vehicles have defective driver and passenger air bag inflators. This is double the amount vehicles already recalled by automakers since 2013. It could mean that this air bag problem could mark the largest U.S. recall of any consumer product, since the Tylenol poison scare in 1982. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), The Detroit News
  21. In light of the GM Ignition Switch and Takata airbag recalls, you would think owners would be aware whether or not their vehicle has a notice and take it in to be repaired. Unfortunately, you would be wrong. Bloomberg reports that only two-thirds of vehicles get repaired. Even more worrying is a third of vehicles under a recall notice aren't repaired within 18 months. “Recalls are only successful, and they only save lives, if they end up getting the cars fixed,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said. So how do you get owners to repair vehicles? Well that's what NHTSA and automakers will be talking about today at meeting in Washington D.C. with the focus on improving the getting the word to get vehicles fixed. General Motors has a fair bit of experience on notifying owners in the wake of ignition switch recall. The company tried redesigned mailings, did outreach on a number of online platforms such as YouTube and Twitter; and even offered loaner cars. Yet, there are still a fair number of vehicles needing to be fixed. “Awareness doesn’t mean action,” said Julie Heisel, GM’s director of customer relationship management. Source: Bloomberg Click here to view the article
  22. In light of the GM Ignition Switch and Takata airbag recalls, you would think owners would be aware whether or not their vehicle has a notice and take it in to be repaired. Unfortunately, you would be wrong. Bloomberg reports that only two-thirds of vehicles get repaired. Even more worrying is a third of vehicles under a recall notice aren't repaired within 18 months. “Recalls are only successful, and they only save lives, if they end up getting the cars fixed,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said. So how do you get owners to repair vehicles? Well that's what NHTSA and automakers will be talking about today at meeting in Washington D.C. with the focus on improving the getting the word to get vehicles fixed. General Motors has a fair bit of experience on notifying owners in the wake of ignition switch recall. The company tried redesigned mailings, did outreach on a number of online platforms such as YouTube and Twitter; and even offered loaner cars. Yet, there are still a fair number of vehicles needing to be fixed. “Awareness doesn’t mean action,” said Julie Heisel, GM’s director of customer relationship management. Source: Bloomberg
  23. 2014 will go down as the year as the recall, but also the year where many glaring issues of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration were made evident - mostly due to the GM ignition switch mess. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told reporters on Tuesday couldn’t keep pace at current staffing levels with 75,000 complaints coming in every year. “It’s no longer reasonable frankly to expect an office with 8 screeners and 16 defects investigators to adequately analyze 75,000 complaints a year,” said Foxx. Now there appears to be change in the air. The Detroit News reports that President Barrack Obama is proposing to increase NHTSA's budget for its Office of Defects Investigation from $10.7 million to $31 million. The increase would add NHTSA to add add 57 people to a staff of more than 100 and also use stronger data mining and monitoring tools to detect problems faster. “This is about giving NHTSA the tools it needs,” said Foxx. However, some folks on the Senate Commerce Committee isn't fully on board with a budget increase. “We think there are ways too that you could reform and accomplish some things (without higher funding). Clearly, we want to work with them, but it’s going to be tough in this budgetary environment with all the constraints that we’re dealing with to get significant increases in funding for any agency,” said Senator John Thune, R-S.D, chairman of the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee. Others think the increase is a step in the right direction. NHTSA needs to do something and obviously they are getting a lot of complaints. (NHTSA’s) ability to field all of the complaints has been difficult in the last couple of years — and people paid a price for that,” said Senator Dean Heller, R-Nev. Source: The Detroit News, 2
  24. This year will likely go down as the one with the most recalls for automobiles. From ignition switches that can easily turn to the accessory or off position, to peeling safety labels, automakers in the U.S. have recalled almost 60 million vehicles. With the high number of vehicles being recalled, people are calling for the recall system to be fixed. But no one can agree on how to fix it. "A recall's a recall, and that's a problem. There needs to be a sophistication of how serious is the recall? And that has to be really clear to a customer. I think the industry is beginning to do that," said Mark Reuss, GM's head of global product development at the LA Auto Show last month. The issue at hand is defining a severity level for a recall. At the moment, there is really no difference between a recall for a missing sticker or a slipping ignition switch. Now the industry has began to solve this problem by categorizing recalls as "safety" or "noncompliance". But they still fall under the recall umbrella which means an automaker has to send a notice out. The problem with this is that some car owners either mistake it for junk mail or pay no attention to it. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) the, average recall completion rate in the U.S. is about 75 percent each year. But for older vehicles, the number drops. The worry is that with the number of recalls that have been happening this past year could cause less people to get their cars fixed. "Whether it's an ignition cylinder or a sticker on a door, a recall is a recall. I do worry that that fatigue sets in and consumers may not act as quickly as they should on big safety issues," said Toyota North America CEO Jim Lentz. The idea has been floated around of classifying recalls by severity. But the idea was shot down by former head of NHTSA David Stickland last year. "There is one standard for safety that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration follows and enforces. We deal with unreasonable risk to safety. We don't gradate them. If there is a judgment that it is an unreasonable risk, it's an unreasonable risk and it needs to be repaired. The notion that there should be some gradation of unreasonable risk is frankly counter to the policy for safety, and frankly, dangerous," Strickland said to a Senate panel last year. Another idea that has been floating around is withholding vehicle registrations until outstanding recalls are fixed. "It clearly is the most effective way to go," said Clarence Ditlow, executive director of the advocacy group Center for Auto Safety. Ditlow goes onto say that this method is used in Germany and it achieves 100 percent in recall fixes. The problem with this idea is that each state controls vehicle registration. That puts the burden of responsibility on the state and not the national government. There's also the problems of tracking the fixes and delays in parts availability. Source: The Detroit News Click here to view the article
  25. This year will likely go down as the one with the most recalls for automobiles. From ignition switches that can easily turn to the accessory or off position, to peeling safety labels, automakers in the U.S. have recalled almost 60 million vehicles. With the high number of vehicles being recalled, people are calling for the recall system to be fixed. But no one can agree on how to fix it. "A recall's a recall, and that's a problem. There needs to be a sophistication of how serious is the recall? And that has to be really clear to a customer. I think the industry is beginning to do that," said Mark Reuss, GM's head of global product development at the LA Auto Show last month. The issue at hand is defining a severity level for a recall. At the moment, there is really no difference between a recall for a missing sticker or a slipping ignition switch. Now the industry has began to solve this problem by categorizing recalls as "safety" or "noncompliance". But they still fall under the recall umbrella which means an automaker has to send a notice out. The problem with this is that some car owners either mistake it for junk mail or pay no attention to it. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) the, average recall completion rate in the U.S. is about 75 percent each year. But for older vehicles, the number drops. The worry is that with the number of recalls that have been happening this past year could cause less people to get their cars fixed. "Whether it's an ignition cylinder or a sticker on a door, a recall is a recall. I do worry that that fatigue sets in and consumers may not act as quickly as they should on big safety issues," said Toyota North America CEO Jim Lentz. The idea has been floated around of classifying recalls by severity. But the idea was shot down by former head of NHTSA David Stickland last year. "There is one standard for safety that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration follows and enforces. We deal with unreasonable risk to safety. We don't gradate them. If there is a judgment that it is an unreasonable risk, it's an unreasonable risk and it needs to be repaired. The notion that there should be some gradation of unreasonable risk is frankly counter to the policy for safety, and frankly, dangerous," Strickland said to a Senate panel last year. Another idea that has been floating around is withholding vehicle registrations until outstanding recalls are fixed. "It clearly is the most effective way to go," said Clarence Ditlow, executive director of the advocacy group Center for Auto Safety. Ditlow goes onto say that this method is used in Germany and it achieves 100 percent in recall fixes. The problem with this idea is that each state controls vehicle registration. That puts the burden of responsibility on the state and not the national government. There's also the problems of tracking the fixes and delays in parts availability. Source: The Detroit News

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