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Honda recalls 27,000 Jazz hatches in Australia

Lights out: A wiring fault that could leave the first-generation Honda Jazz without low-beam headlights has forced a safety recall.

Global Jazz recall extended to Australia as Honda fixes headlight switch glitch

Honda logo7 Jan 2011

By RON HAMMERTON

HONDA Australia has joined a worldwide safety recall of its Jazz hatchback to fix potentially defective wiring in the headlight switch system that could leave drivers in the dark.

More than 27,000 of the smallest cars in Honda’s Australian range will be sent back to the dealer to have the wiring checked and, if necessary, rectified.

The recall is part of an international action affecting 1.35 million first-generation Jazz hatchbacks – known in Japan and the United States as the Fit – built in Japan.

Although the global recall is said to affect cars built between November 2001 and October 2007, Honda Australia has narrowed down the problem batch to vehicles built between 2002 – when the car was introduced to Australia – and 2005, after which supply switched to Honda’s Thailand plant.

The global recall was announced in Japan in mid December, but it has taken until now for Honda Australia to identify local vehicles caught up in the action and put a fix in motion for the fault that that stems from a production problem at Honda’s Suzuka plant.

In its advice to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the company says the problem involves insufficient margin in the length of an electric wire connected to the headlight switch.

“As a result, the terminal joint portion moves, contact resistance increases, the terminal generates heat and the coupler melts,” the statement says.

The fault could leave the vehicle without low-beam headlights.

Honda Australia is writing to all owners of the affected cars, asking them to contact their dealer to have the wiring checked.

A Honda spokesman in Tokyo said no accidents had been reported as a result of the fault.

The recall affects 735,000 units in Japan, 143,000 in the United States and 385,000 in Europe. Others will be recalled in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

The latest recall is the second for Jazz/Fit in overseas markets in a year. In February 2010, Honda recalled 646,000 Jazz, Fit and City cars to fix a faulty electric window switch that could lead to a fire. However, none of the affected cars were sold in Australia.

A facelifted Jazz is set to be launched in Australia in this month.

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