GM recalling 1.3 million vehicles

DETROIT Tue Mar 2, 2010 8:55am EST

A worker walks behind a logo of General Motors after the announcement of the closing of the Opel assembly plant in Antwerp January 21, 2010. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

A worker walks behind a logo of General Motors after the announcement of the closing of the Opel assembly plant in Antwerp January 21, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Francois Lenoir

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Co is recalling 1.3 million compact cars in North America to address a power steering problem that has been linked to 14 crashes and one injury, the company said on Tuesday.

U.S. safety regulators opened an investigation on January 27 into approximately 905,000 Cobalt models in the United States after receiving more than 1,100 complaints of power steering failures. The complaints included 14 crashes and one injury.

The recall covers the 2005-2010 model year Chevrolet Cobalt and 2007-2010 Pontiac G5 in the United States; 2005-2006 Pontiac Pursuit sold in Canada, and the 2005-2006 Pontiac G4 sold in Mexico, GM said in a statement.

GM said it told the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about the voluntary recall on Monday after concluding its own investigation that began in 2009.

GM said the affected vehicles can be still be "safely controlled" but it may require greater steering effort under 15 mph. Drivers will see a warning light and hear a chime if the power steering fails.

"After our in-depth investigation, we found that this is a condition that takes time to develop. It tends to occur in older models out of warranty," GM Vice President of Quality Jamie Hresko said in the statement.

"Recalling these vehicles is the right thing to do for our customers' peace of mind," he said.

GM said it is currently developing a remedy to fix the problem and will notify customers when the plan is finalized.

The recall comes at a time of heighten public and regulatory scrutiny over vehicle safety issues in the wake of massive recalls by Toyota Motor Corp.

Toyota global quality control chief Shinichi Sasaki and North American President Yoshimi Inaba are scheduled to appear before a Senate committee on Tuesday for a third hearing on its handling of consumer complaints about sudden acceleration.

(Reporting by Soyoung Kim; Editing by Lincoln Feast)

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Comments (11)
zeo wrote:
Hmmm, so where is the big witch hunt over this with GM? How about an investigation into why their brakes fail on regular basis and have done so for the past 12 years and why they won’t fix it and charge very large amounts of money for repairs to vehicles that are due to their negligence? (it always required a complete replacement of the brake system and has happened to way too many Gm cars) How about the fact that the last three GM vehicles I had always ended up with frozen windshield washer lines in winter, making it impossible to wash your windshield if hit with road slush.

Mar 02, 2010 5:13am EST  --  Report as abuse
seagull1106 wrote:
Are they going to give Government Motors an A–whipping like they did Toyota? I think not.

Mar 02, 2010 7:03am EST  --  Report as abuse
Hummm wrote:
The hypocrisy and collusion surrounding toyotas treatment will be exposed by lack of US Congress hearings and US press under reporting in this case!

Mar 02, 2010 7:22am EST  --  Report as abuse
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