- General Motors on Thursday issued consumer instructions in a recall of nearly 1.4 million of its small cars for defective ignition switches.
- The automaker said it expects the first replacement parts to be available in early April.
- Owners will receive a letter from GM the week of March 10 informing them of the recall.
DETROIT — General Motors on Thursday issued consumer instructions in a recall of nearly 1.4 million of its small cars for defective ignition switches.
The automaker said it expects the first replacement parts to be available in early April.
Owners will receive a letter from GM the week of March 10 informing them of the recall.
Customers will get a second letter informing them when they can contact dealers for repair appointments.
The first letter will remind them to use only the ignition key (no key fob or other material) until the recall repair is completed, GM said in a statement.
The recall involves the 2005-'07 Chevrolet Cobalt, 2007 Pontiac G5, 2006-'07 Chevrolet HHR and Pontiac Solstice, 2003-'07 Saturn Ion and 2007 Saturn Sky.
In these models, the weight of the key ring and/or road conditions or some other jarring event may cause the ignition switch to move out of the "run" position, turning off the engine, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
"If the key is not in the run position, the airbags may not deploy if the vehicle is involved in a crash, increasing the risk of injury," NHTSA said in its summary of the problem.
The ignition switch defect has killed 13 people and resulted in 31 crashes in which airbags failed to deploy. The recall also prompted an ongoing investigation by NHTSA whether GM handled the recall in a timely manner.
Consumers can contact Chevrolet at 1-800-222-1020, Pontiac at 1-800-762-2737 or Saturn at 1-800-553-6000. They can also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236.
Edmunds says: GM is waiting for parts to become available to its dealers, so it will take several weeks before repairs can be made. If you are experiencing a problem with your vehicle in the meantime, get it into the dealership immediately.