In mid-November of 2020, General Motors announced that it was recalling 194,105 vehicles over safety concerns. The affected cars and SUVs have a defective part that puts them at greater risk of losing power while in motion or catching fire. These defective parts, called accumulators, may have loose or missing bolts that could result in a transmission oil leak. GM will notify affected consumers and encourage them to seek the replacement part at their local dealership.
Defective Accumulator Increases Safety Risk
The accumulator is a component of the auto start-stop system. This system is responsible for shutting off the engine when the vehicle is idling in order to lower emissions and conserve fuel. However, due to a software error at a manufacturing plant, some accumulators were made with loose or missing bolts. Over time, these defective accumulators could lead to a transmission oil leak, increasing the risk of propulsion failure or fire. While there have been no reports of injuries or crashes related to this failure, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is urging consumers to seek the replacement parts.
Vehicles Affected By This Recall
A number of Chevrolet, Buick, and Cadillac models are included in this recall. According to Consumer Reports, the following makes and models are affected by the accumulator recall:
- Chevy Cruze sedans and hatchbacks manufactured between Jan. 16, 2018, and March 26, 2019
- Chevrolet Malibu sedans manufactured between Jan. 26, 2018, and Sept. 20, 2018
- Buick LaCrosse sedans manufactured between Jan. 11, 2018, and Jan. 24, 2019
- Chevy Equinox SUVs manufactured between March 21, 2018, and March 4, 2020
- GMC Terrain SUVs manufactured between March 4, 2018, and Jan. 31, 2020
- Chevrolet Traverse SUVs manufactured between April 9, 2018, and July 18, 2020
- Chevrolet Blazer SUVs manufactured between Jan. 21, 2019, and Dec. 14, 2019
- Buick Enclave SUVs manufactured between Aug. 17, 2018, and July 7, 2020
- Cadillac XT6 SUVs manufactured between July 1, 2019, and Dec. 21, 2019
- Cadillac XT4 SUVs manufactured between Oct. 23, 2018, and Nov. 8, 2019
- GMC Acadia SUVs manufactured between March 8, 2019, and Feb. 6, 2019
- Buick Encore SUVs manufactured between Feb. 12, 2019, and Jan. 7, 2020
In addition, the 2019-2020 Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX SUVs, 2019-2020 Ford Transit Connect vans, and 2020 Ford Escape and Lincoln Corsair SUVs have been recalled for a similar defect.
Obtaining the Recall Repair
GM intends to notify the affected consumers by December 2020, and the replacement parts should be available by December 20. Consumers should visit their dealership to have their accumulators assessed for missing or loose bolts. If there are issues, the bolts will be replaced at no cost.
For more information about your rights as a consumer under California lemon law, contact Lemon Law Partners, LLP at (510) 944-0336 to arrange a free case evaluation with an experienced Oakland attorney.