As General Motors is still dealing with the fallout over the faulty ignition switches in a number of its smaller models, now comes news of another product defect in GM cars that sounds very familiar the ignition switch problem. Some 2.6 million GM cars were recalled earlier this year due to that issue.
This time, the problem is in 2010 through 2014 Chevrolet Cameros. General Motors has announced a recall of over 500,000 of the cars because if the keys are bumped or jostled, the ignition can turn off, shutting down the engine.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says it has received more than 200 complaints about the Camaros. General Motors says it was informed of four injuries and three crashes caused by the defect out of 510,000 2010 through 2014 Camaros sold around the world.
General Motors asserts that the ignition system in the Camero is different from the one in the previously-recalled cars. It says the defective product in the Cameros is in the key fob, which holds the key. If that fob is jostled, the key may turn, which can turn off the engine and also disable the airbags.
According to the NHTSA, it began receiving complaints from consumers back in 2010 about their Cameros stalling, sometimes while they were driving at highway speeds. Similar stories were reported in subsequent years. A number of consumers said their dealers were of no assistance in finding the cause of the sudden stalling.
GM says it has made a number of significant changes to improve its safety practices. The company has been assessed a $35 million fine by safety regulators, and its safety practices are now receiving government oversight. A GM executive says that the company's action on this Camero issue is "an example of the new norm for product safety at GM." A former attorney with the NHTSA agrees -- sort of. He says, "It's as if they are clearing out a backlog of old safety problems."
Vehicle defects can be reported by customers years before the manufacturer takes the appropriate action. When Florida consumers are involved in a crash or sustain an injury they believe was caused by a vehicle defect and they do not receive an adequate response, it may be wise to seek legal advice on holding the automaker accountable and preventing further harm.
Source: The New York Times, "G.M. Recalls Camaros to Replace Faulty Keys" Danielle Ivory and Benjamin Preston, Jun. 13, 2014