(Adds number of vehicles affected in Canada, VW comments)
DETROIT Aug 8 Volkswagen AG is more
than doubling a three-year-old recall of its Chrysler-built
Routan minivans that have ignition switches that can be knocked
into the accessory position and shut off the engine, according
to documents filed with U.S. safety regulators.
VW is recalling about 20,417 Routan minivans from model year
2009 in the United States and Canada, adding to the 2010 models
it recalled in 2011 for the same issue and bringing the total
number of vehicles affected to about 34,210 vehicles, according
to the documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety
A VW spokeswoman said on Friday there have been no reported
accidents, injuries or deaths related to the issue, and no other
markets were affected.
The automaker expanded the recall after Chrysler in late
June sent documents for a recall of its own minivans for the
issue, saying 2009 Routan models were affected as well,
according to the NHTSA documents. In June, Chrysler, a unit of
Fiat, added almost 696,000 minivans from model years
2008 and 2009 to a recall of 2010 models for the ignition switch
Attention to the issue of ignition switches that can be
inadvertently turned off while driving, causing the loss of air
bags, power steering and power brakes, increased after General
Motors Co recalled 2.6 million cars because of a
defective ignition switch linked to at least 13 deaths.
The crisis at the No. 1 U.S. automaker has led to numerous
investigations by NHTSA, the U.S. Congress, the U.S. Department
of Justice and several state attorneys general.
Like other automakers who have dealt with this safety issue,
VW is advising customers with the recalled vehicles to remove
all items from their key rings, leaving only the ignition key,
according to the NHTSA documents.
Volkswagen will notify owners, and dealers will modify the
ignition switch at no cost, according to the NHTSA documents.
The recall is expected to begin by the end of this month.
Of the cars affected in the 2009-model recall, about 18,526
were sold in the United States and about 1,891 in Canada, VW
(Reporting by Ben Klayman in Detroit; Editing by Paul Simao)