Vehicles Affected: More than 51,600 model-year 2014 Kia Soul cars manufactured between July 21, 2013, and Jan. 17, 2014.
The Problem: The plug that secures the pinion gear to the steering gear assembly may loosen due to an improper application of thread-locking adhesive during the assembly process. This could cause the pinion gear to separate from the steering gear assembly, causing a loss of steering and increasing the risk of a crash.
The Fix: Kia will begin notifying owners this month, and dealers will replace the pinion plug with a new one that has properly applied adhesive, for free.
What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Kia at 800-333-4542 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236, or go to www.safercar.gov, for more info.… Read more
Vehicles Affected: About 574,000 model-year 2000-06 BMW 3 Series luxury cars manufactured between May 1999 and August 2006.
The Problem: This is a voluntary expansion of a May 2013 recall of 42,000 3 Series cars to replace the passenger-side front airbag; the airbag inflator may deploy the device with too much pressure, causing a rupture and, possibly, serious injury to occupants. The problem is related to the massive recall involving several other automakers whose vehicles are equipped with airbags manufactured by Japan’s Takata Corp., a worldwide supplier of airbags. BMW said this recall, which excludes the models recalled in the 2013 campaign, is precautionary.… Read more
Vehicles Affected: Approximately 2,100 model-year 2015 Sonata sedans manufactured from May 2 through May 23, 2014
The Problem: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is reporting that a wiring harness problem could interfere with the power-steering system, increasing effort needed to steer the car and the risk of a crash. Drivers may also have trouble moving the shifter from the Park position. Hyundai said there have been no crashes or injuries related to this issue.
The Fix: Dealers will inspect and replace the affected parts for free.
What Owners Should Do: In June, Hyundai notified dealers to suspend sales of affected Sonata vehicles and began contacting owners.… Read more
General Motors ordered Cadillac dealers to stop selling some versions of the CTS because the automaker does not have a fix yet for cars recalled in late June over an issue where engines can be shut off if the driver’s knee bumps the ignition key, the company said.
Details of incidents leading up to the June 30 recall, including three occasions where GM employees bumped the keys and shut off the engines in 2012 CTS models, were made public by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
GM, in the notice, told dealers not to sell 2003-13 models of the CTS and 2004-06 models of the Cadillac SRX from their used-car inventories.… Read more
The 2015 Ford Mustang is still a couple of months away from showrooms, but Ford answered the biggest question surrounding it: How much power does it have?
There are actually three answers, one for each engine.
The big dog 5.0-liter Coyote V8 in the Mustang GT is rated at 435-horses and 400 lb-ft of torque, up 15-horses and 10 lb-ft, while the base car’s 3.7-liter V6 loses 5-horses, for a 300-horse/290 lb-ft rating.
It’s the 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, Mustang’s first since 1986, that’s been the most tantalizing, and it doesn’t disappoint with 310-horses and 320 lb-ft on tap.
Just as important to pony car fans, while there were rumors that the all-new Mustang was going to weigh hundreds of pounds more than the current car, the gains are much more modest across the board, ranging from 12-87 pounds, depending on the model.… Read more
The American love affair with SUVs and crossovers has pushed the segments to a new milestone.
SUVs and crossovers combined accounted for 36.5 percent of the U.S. light-vehicle market through May compared with the sedan segment’s 35.4 percent share.
It marks the first time SUV and crossover retail registrations have surpassed sedans, IHS Automotive said.
“These vehicles offer the combination of appealing features associated with both cars and light trucks,” IHS Automotive analyst Tom Libby said in a statement. “Combined with the successful launches of all-new models and the introduction of redesigned existing products, these body styles offer a compelling option for the market.”
Through the first five months of 2014, the SUV and crossover segments combined posted a 2.6 percentage point increase in market share compared with the same period in 2013.… Read more
The 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat will cost $60,990 when it goes on sale this fall with its 707-horse 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V8 under the hood, the automaker announced. That compares to $55,935 for the 662-horse Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, $57,650 for the 580-horse Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 and $397,500 for the 691-horse Lamborghini Aventador.
With 650 lb-ft of torque, the Challenger SRT Hellcat is the most-powerful American production car ever made, and Dodge says it can do a quarter-mile run in 11.2 seconds at 125 mph on its showroom stock tires, and just 10.8 with a set of street-legal drag radials installed.… Read more
It’s pretty much impossible to go a day without yet another vehicle safety recall; GM’s widespread ignition defect woes and the ever-expanding, multi-automaker Takata airbag recall continue to grab headlines. With so much recall news, it’s easy to get jaded, but they address dangerous problems and you can be the first step in making sure all vehicles stay safe. Often, recall investigations are launched after a vehicle owner files a complaint.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration receives more than 40,000 consumer complaints each year — and looks into all of them, said Kathryn Henry, media relations for the U.S. Department of Transportation and NHTSA.… Read more