WASHINGTON — Mazda North American Operations is recalling 190,102 2007-'12 Mazda CX-7 SUVs for a suspension problem that might cause a loss of steering control, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
"Water may enter the front suspension ball-joint fittings," the NHTSA said in its recall summary. "If the water is contaminated with salt, such as from driving on snowy roads that have been treated, the ball joint may corrode and separate from the lower control arm, resulting in a loss of steering control. A loss of steering control can increase the risk of a crash."
Mazda told federal safety regulators it has received seven reports from North America on lower ball-joint separation.
A Mazda spokeswoman did not respond immediately to a query from Edmunds asking if any injuries or accidents are linked to the recall.
The affected CX-7s were built from February 14, 2006, to May 9, 2012.
Mazda dealers will replace both front lower control arms. Parts are not available at this point.
Owners should expect to receive interim notices about the recall starting around October 10. Follow-up notices will be sent when parts are available.
Mazda will prioritize the recall and first fix vehicles currently registered in Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia.
The remaining vehicles will be fixed when parts are available.
Owners can contact Mazda customer service at 1-800-222-5500.
Edmunds says: Since it will take some time to get this recall started, concerned owners should stay in touch with their Mazda dealer on next steps.