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Holden Combo among flurry of fresh recalls

Retro fix: Holden's Combo is one of several vehicles to get a recall notice, in this case to rectify a problem that could set off airbags or seatbelt pretensioners.

Exploding airbags, engine fires and park brake failures force latest recalls

General News logo8 Mar 2010

SIX popular models have been recalled in the two weeks since Ford Australia extended its high-profile June 2009 recall to fix faulty brake booster check valves on a further 9000-plus E-Gas Falcons.

Three commercial vehicles were recalled on the same day as the LPG Falcons (February 26), including Holden’s Combo, the Peugeot Expert and Mercedes-Benz’s Vito and Viano, with a fourth following on March 2 in Hyundai’s iLoad and iMax.

Australia’s two latest automotive recalls, issued on March 5, involve problems with the steering gear on Volvo’s XC60 and parking brakes on Ford’s FG Falcon ute.

The latter relates only to 667 examples of the current FG Falcon ute fitted with a three-position bench seat and column-shift automatic transmission, built between July 23, 2009 and February 22, 2010.

According to Ford, a potential manufacturing defect could result in the parking brake of affected vehicles being inadvertently released if knocked while engaged.

In the case of the mid-size XC60 crossover, Volvo says a steering gear problem that could affect up to 1320 MY2009 and MY2010 vehicles (with VINs ranging between 000001 and 086575) may lead to an engine bay fire or sudden loss of steering.

“Investigations have identified that the steering gear high pressure lines joint connecting to the steering gear may not be properly assembled,” said Volvo.

 center image From top: Volvo XC60, Ford FG Falcon Ute, Hyundai iLoad.

“Should this condition occur the customer may notice oil leakage. In the worst case scenario, due to the high pressure in the system and the specific engine installation, oil may be sprayed onto hot surfaces potentially resulting in smoke formation or ignition of oil, possibly leading to engine bay fire.

“As the oil leakage is substantial a sudden loss of steering assistance may occur.”

Holden has advised the equally alarming potential for the airbags and/or seatbelt pretensioners in its small XC Combo van to deploy unintentionally due to a possible air-conditioning drain tube blockage that may cause water to enter the airbag control module.

The problem affects some 6514 Combo models with VINs ranging between W0L0XCF2523003520 and W0L0XCF2584461165.

A problem also afflicts 101 versions of Peugeot’s small Partner commercial built between July 2007 and December 2008, this time relating to wear and tear of the fuel return pipe from the engine cover. No potential outcome is listed for the condition.

In the case of the large TQ-V iLoad and TQ-W iMax vans, Hyundai says that a batch of throttle cables was delivered to the production line without a polymer sleeve, the absence of which “may restrict the movement of the cable to control the actuation of the engine throttle.

“This interference may increase the effort required for pedal operation and in some instances may affect the driveability of the vehicle,” said Hyundai.

The throttle cable issue affects 539 Hyundai vehicles equipped with a 2.4-litre petrol engine and built between April 28 and June 30, 2009.

Finally, proving that Mercedes-Benz is not immune to product recalls, the Type 639 Vito and Viano van has been called back to have its rear vent windows replaced before they fall off.

According to Mercedes: “The adhesive strength between the left and right rear vent window and its forward mounting hinge may be insufficient.

“Under certain conditions this may lead to the window pane detaching unexpectedly from its mounting point and thereby pose a hazard to other road users.”

Benz says 140 Vito and Viano vans built between October-December 2005 and March-April 2006 are affected.

The manufacturer of each model in question will notify the owners of all affected vehicles.

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