GM creates streamlined order system for recall-related repairs

Wed Apr 16, 2014 6:21pm EDT

(Reuters) - General Motors Co said on Wednesday that it has set up a new fast-track ordering system to accelerate the shipment of parts needed to fix an ignition switch defect that has forced the automaker to recall 2.6 million of its compact cars.

Dealers can now order all the parts they need to make the repair, and have them shipped in a single kit, by submitting the car's vehicle identification number to GM, which will automatically recognize the order as recall-related and give it priority status, spokesman Jim McCain told Reuters.

Normally, the company's parts ordering process requires dealers to go through several more steps before their requests are given priority status and even then the parts can often be shipped separately.

"We changed the procedure to streamline the process and to minimize the inconvenience to our customers and dealers," Cain said.

Dealers were informed of the new procedure during a Web conference GM hosted Wednesday to update them on the recall, Cain said. The establishment of the new ordering system was first reported by Automotive News.

The defect, which can cause the engine to shut off and the airbags to become inoperable if the ignition switch is bumped accidentally, has been linked to least 13 deaths.

(Reporting by James B. Kelleher in Detroit; Editing by Mohammad Zargham)