DETROIT (WWJ) – Already facing a Justice Department criminal probe over faulty ignition switches, General Motors on Monday announced the recall of 1.5 million vehicles.

The latest round of recalls include newer sport utility vehicles, luxury sedans and full-size vans.

GM spokesman Terry Rhadigan says, while these recalls are not related to the ignition switch issue, the timing is not coincidental.

“We’re announcing three separate recalls, and it’s really a result of our redoubling of our focus on safety,” Rhadigan told WWJ Newsradio 950. “(GM CEO) Mary Barra has been very clear with us that the team will redouble its efforts.”

Included are:

  • 303,000 Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana from the 2009-2014 model years with gross vehicle weight under 10,000 pounds
  • 63,900 Cadillac XTS full-size sedan from the 2013 and 2014 model years
  • 1.18 million Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia models from the 2008-2013 model years, Chevrolet Traverse from the 2009-2013 model years, and Saturn Outlook from the 2008-2010 model years

“Today’s announcement underscores the focus we’re putting on the safety and peace of mind of our customers. We are conducting an intense review of our internal processes and will have more developments to announce as we move forward,” Barra said.

In a video, Barra says she would never put her own children in a vehicle that might harm them.

The full-size vans recalled have gross vehicle weights of 10,000 pounds or less do not comply with a head impact requirement for unrestrained occupants, requiring a rework of the passenger instrument panel material.

Unsold vehicles have been placed on a stop delivery until development of the solution has been completed and parts are available. Customers will be notified at that time. Repairs will be made at no charge to customers.

In the XTS, a brake booster pump can create positive pressure within the wiring harness attached to the pump relay. This pressure can lead to the dislodging of a plug in the brake booster pump relay, allowing corrosive elements to enter the connector and form a low-resistance short that could lead to overheating, melting of plastic components and a possible engine compartment fire.

GM is aware of two engine compartment fires in unsold vehicles at dealerships and two cases of melted components.

With respect to the Enclave, Traverse, Acadia and Outlook, the vehicles are equipped with a Service Air Bag warning light in the driver information center. Ignoring the Service Air Bag warning light will eventually result in the non-deployment of the side impact restraints, which include driver and passenger seat-mounted side air bags, front center air bag (if equipped), and the seat belt pretensioners.

To repair the condition, dealers will remove the driver and passenger side air bag wiring harness connectors and splice and solder the wires together.

WWJ Auto Analyst John McElroy says this was supposed to be GM’s year with a lot of new vehicles, increased sales, and market share. Now, he says, that will be difficult to achieve.

However, McElroy said, he thinks these new recalls are a good thing for GM. “It is pulling a lot of potential recalls forward and acting on them very quickly,” he  said.

“It’s not that there’s a lot of bad news that they want to get out of the way. It’s that they recognize their process for identifying a potential recall somehow broke down, and Mary Barra is showing that’s she’s clearly taking charge here,”  McElroy said.

Rhadigan said, so far, there are no reports of injuries or deaths related to these recalls. Vehicle owners will be notified.


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