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Global GM recall includes local Cruze

Breaking point: Holden has expanded an earlier recall of the Cruze small car to include about 600 owners who have already had a fix for the problem applied.

Expanded recall for Holden’s Cruze scoops up already fixed cars

Holden logo1 Apr 2014

By BARRY PARK

HOLDEN will recall more than 2700 1.8-litre manual Cruze models as part of parent company General Motors’ growing problems that will see the US car-making giant apply fixes to up to 6.2 million vehicles worldwide.

However, Holden’s recall, announced today, will include a batch of 600 cars that have already had faulty driveshafts replaced in September last year, which will be upgraded to newer driveshafts even though the fix applied last year has solved the problem.

Holden said it would need to expand September’s recall to cover 2712 Cruze owners – including those who already had a replacement component fitted – with most slotted in for a precautionary replacement of a driveshaft that, if left in, could shatter unexpectedly and disable the car.

The Holden recall relates to a similar GM notice issued last month, however, the US car-maker late last week halted the sale of some Cruze variants for an unspecified reason, flagging safety concerns.

Holden product communications national manager Kate Lonsdale said the “recall for a recall” related to six-speed manual versions of the Cruze paired with the 1.8-litre petrol four-cylinder engine – the model identified in September’s notice.

“We made the call yesterday that it (the US recall) does impact us,” Ms Lonsdale told GoAuto.

“It’s linked to the recall we did last year, and what the US found out is that the vehicles that were recalled last time, they needed to expand the range (of vehicles affected).

“The other cars, like the diesels, all use different driveshafts, so they’re not affected.” Ms Lonsdale said the Cruze models affected by the last recall would need to come back to workshops for about an hour to have a better-engineered driveshaft fitted, and in the case of those receiving the fix last time, the previous replacement shaft removed.

“Since the last recall they have a new driveshaft component that is better than the last one, even though it was certified and we have had no issues with that,” she said.

“Since we’ve had driveshafts replaced to ensure they don’t fracture we’ve had no incidents, however, they have new certified components that they want to use in the recall, so we’ll ensure that everyone has this new component.

“Everyone will have the driveshaft replaced – it’s not that we think it (the previously replaced shaft) is faulty.” The precautions at Holden relate to GM’s struggle with reliability as overnight it added another 1.2 billion vehicles to its growing list of faults, and earmarked a $US750 million ($A808 million) war chest to help it pay for the repairs it needs to make.

The latest recall relates to faulty electronic steering systems in US-market cars up to a decade old, which could fail and add to the likelihood of a crash.

It also follows on from a more serious recall affecting the ignition systems in as many as 1.2 million GM models that so far have been linked to 13 deaths in the US, and as many as 31 serious injuries.

Another big recall relates to faulty transmissions in about 700,000 pick-up trucks that could disable the vehicle in traffic, again increasing the likelihood of a crash.

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