WASHINGTON — Nissan North America is recalling 298,747 2012-'15 Nissan Versa sedans and 2014-'15 Nissan Versa Note hatchbacks for possible pedal operation interference, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
"The affected vehicles have a center console trim panel that may catch the driver's shoe and delay the transition from the accelerator pedal to the brake pedal," said NHTSA in its recall summary. "A delay in the application of the brake pedal would lengthen the distance needed to stop the vehicle and increase the risk of a crash."
NHTSA opened a preliminary investigation into the issue in 2014. In April 2015, federal safety regulators upgraded the investigation and said they had received 11 consumer complaints and one report of a crash with minor injuries to the driver.
The affected Versa sedans were built from June 9, 2011 to March 11, 2015. The affected Versa Note hatchbacks were built from April 23, 2013 to March 11, 2015.
Nissan said a dealership service campaign to help address the issue is already underway and owners of all potentially affected vehicles have been notified. Owners who have not yet elected to fix their vehicles will get a new reminder letter within the next 60 days.
The automaker told federal safety regulators the defect occurs "in certain rare instances that are dependent on driver foot position and shoe type." Nissan noted that the brake and accelerator pedals remain fully operational with no loss of vehicle control.
"However, this condition could cause a slight delay in the smooth transition between the accelerator pedal and the brake pedal, which may increase the braking distance," Nissan said in a document filed with NHTSA.
Edmunds says: Owners of these cars should be in touch with their Nissan dealer on next steps since repairs are already being made.