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Driveway crash pulls Cruzes back to workshop

Stop gap: Holden has asked 11,480 Cruze owners to visit its workshops to have a potential brake problem fixed.

Cold-start braking problems drag almost 11,500 Cruzes in for a fix

19 Aug 2013

HOLDEN has asked almost 11,500 Cruze owners to bring their cars back to the workshop after one crashed while backing down a driveway.

The incident – which Holden said resulted in no injuries – has sparked Australia to join a massive recall of almost 300,000 Cruze models in the US to fix a similar problem where the car’s brakes could fail to work properly when cold.

The recall only affects models fitted with a 1.4-litre turbocharged engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission – including the warmed-over SRi-V performance version.

According to Holden’s parent company, General Motors, the brake failure – which it says forces the driver to apply extra pressure on the brake pedal to stop the vehicle – was potentially linked to 27 crashes in the US, although there were no reports of injuries.

The recall notice filed with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on Friday said the cars were all built between late February, 2011 and mid June last year.

“The vehicles supplementary electric vacuum pump may not work when the engine is cold,” the notice said.

“When the engine is cold and does not have enough vacuum the braking performance of the vehicle will be reduced, which poses a potential crash hazard.” The recall notice does not affect vehicles fitted with turbocharged 1.6-litre or normally aspirated 1.8-litre petrol engines, or the 2.0-litre turbo-diesel versions. The recall also does not affect cars sold with a six-speed manual gearbox.

According to Holden, the fix to the Cruze’s brakes will take about an hour.

The US fix involves the replacement of a microswitch in the brake system’s vacuum pipe.

Holden has previously recalled Cruze models fitted with the 1.4-litre engine to remove the potential of an engine fire.

The recall, which affected 9500 cars, was in response to a belly pan that could catch oil, increasing the risk of a fire if the oil came in contact with hot engine parts.

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