Recall Alert: 2014 Land Rover Range Rover, Range Rover Sport and 2013-2014 LR4

2014LandRoverRangeRoverRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 28,000 model-year 2014 Land Rover Range Rover and Range Rover Sport luxury SUVs, and model-year 2013-14 LR4 luxury SUVs, all manufactured between Sept. 16, 2013, and June 30, 2014

The Problem: The tire pressure monitoring system may fail to learn the locations of the individual sensors while the vehicle is being driven. As a result, the low tire pressure warning light will illuminate, despite the tire pressure being within specification. If one of the tires subsequently loses air pressure, the driver will not be notified of the change, increasing the risk of tire failure and, likewise, a crash.

The Fix: Land Rover began notifying owners on Nov. 6, and dealers will update the body control module software for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Land Rover at 800-637-6837, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | November 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2015 Cadillac Escalade, Escalade ESV

2015CadillacEscaladeRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 1,000 model-year 2015 Cadillac Escalade and Escalade ESV luxury SUVs

The Problem: The passenger-side instrument panel top cover may have been manufactured using an incorrect spacer fabric, causing a reduction of adhesion between the spacer fabric and the vinyl show surface. This could cause inconsistent passenger airbag deployment, increasing the risk of an injury in a crash necessitating airbags.

The Fix: Cadillac manufacturer GM will notify owners, and dealers will replace the instrument panel top cover for free. The automaker has not yet announced a notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call GM at 800-458-8006, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | November 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2006-2011 Lexus LS, GS and IS

2010LexusLS

Vehicles Affected: Nearly 423,000 luxury sedans, including model-year 2007-10 Lexus LS sedans manufactured between May 9, 2006, and July 20, 2010; model-year 2006-11 GS sedans manufactured between Jan. 6, 2005, and Sept. 10, 2010; and model-year 2006-11 IS sedans manufactured between Aug. 30, 2005, and Sept. 10, 2010

The Problem: Due to anticorrosion plating remnants, fuel may leak from where the fuel pressure sensor is attached to the fuel delivery pipe. In the presence of an ignition source, this increases the risk of a fire.

The Fix: Lexus manufacturer Toyota will begin notifying owners in December, and dealers will clean and reseal the fuel pressure sensor mounting area for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Toyota at 800-331-4331 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236, or go to www.safercar.gov, for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | November 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

NHTSA: Not Enough Evidence to Force Nationwide Takata Airbag Recall

Takata

A high-ranking official at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration was defending federal safety regulators' decision not to mandate a national recall of all cars affected by defective airbags manufactured by Japan’s Takata. According to The Detroit News, Deputy NHTSA Administrator David Friedman was preparing to tell a U.S. Senate committee that the agency doesn't have sufficient data to force a nationwide recall, and that such a broad action could divert limited replacement parts from targeted high-humidity regions of the country where affected cars are already known to be high-risk. Friedman's written testimony mirrored language used by Takata early this week in opposing a national recall.

Related: What Cars Are Included in the Takata Airbag Recall?

This follows news Wednesday that NHTSA was urging the 10 automakers affected by the potentially deadly airbag issue to recall all involved cars across the U.S. Due to defective airbag inflators, front passenger airbags could rupture upon deployment and spray vehicle occupants with shrapnel; the problem already has resulted in 7.8 million recalls.

Get the full story from The Detroit News.

Thinkstock/iStock

By Matt Schmitz | November 20, 2014 | Comments (3)

Three Minivans Score Poorly in IIHS Crash Test

IIHSQuest_1

The Nissan Quest, Chrysler Town & Country and its twin, the Dodge Grand Caravan, all received the lowest score of poor in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's small overlap crash test. This test simulates what happens when a vehicle's front corner collides with another car or a utility pole and has been a tough one for automakers.

Related: More Safety News

"Minivans are popular among parents, a group that tends to be safety conscious, but we've only seen two so far that offer decent protection in small overlap crashes," said IIHS chief research officer David Zuby in a press release.

Those two minivans are the Honda Odyssey, which received the top score of good in the small overlap test, and the updated-for-2015 Toyota Sienna, with its acceptable score. IIHS scores are good, acceptable, marginal and poor. Both the Odyssey and the Sienna have received IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus designations, which is the agency's highest award. The 2015 Kia Sedona, which recently arrived at dealerships, wasn't tested by IIHS because the automaker plans to make changes to the minivan to improve its small overall protection. IIHS plans to test it as soon as it's available.

By Jennifer Newman | November 20, 2014 | Comments (2)

Recall Alert: 2014 Mini Cooper Hardtop 2-Door

2014MiniCooperHardtop2-DoorRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 5,800 model-year 2014 Mini Cooper Hardtop 2-Door cars manufactured between Jan. 7 and July 21

The Problem: The spare wheel may have been attached under the car with a nut that is not self-locking. Vibrations from driving may cause the nut to loosen, allowing the wheel to separate from the car, becoming a road hazard and increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: Mini-manufacturer BMW was expected to begin notifying owners this month, and dealers will replace the spare wheel securing nut with a self-locking nut for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Mini at 866-275-6464, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer

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By Matt Schmitz | November 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

NHTSA Urges Automakers to Issue National Recall for Takata Airbags

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said today it's urging the 10 automakers involved in auto supplier Takata’s passenger-side airbag campaign to recall all such cars made across the U.S. That’s what The Detroit News reports, citing NHTSA Deputy Administrator David Friedman. Still, it could take several months before the agency could force automakers to recall more cars through its full statutory powers, according to the Detroit News.

Related: What Cars Are Included in the Takata Airbag Recall?

The agency also ordered automakers to submit documents that show what they’ve done to test the airbag inflators outside of high-humidity areas.

The move stems from a recent NHTSA evaluation of a driver’s-side airbag failure outside the current recall region. If NHTSA is successful, it will dramatically increase the number of vehicles recalled. Right now, automakers have recalled 7.8 million vehicles ― the majority from Toyota, Honda and Nissan ― for airbag issues. Some automakers, like Toyota, have advised dealerships to deactivate the passenger-side airbag if the replacement airbag inflators are not in stock yet, and for drivers to then keep anyone from sitting there. Still, some in Congress began pressing for a nationwide recall last month.

Click here to read the full report from The Detroit News.

iStock/Thinkstock

By Kelsey Mays | November 18, 2014 | Comments (1)

What Are the Most Damage-Prone Cars?

DamageProneCars

In August, we reported Allstate's ranking of America's worst and best drivers by city, which concluded that Worcester, Mass., had the most dangerous drivers while Fort Collins, Colo., drivers were the safest behind the wheel. That got us to thinking: If certain drivers get in more crashes, which cars tend to incur the most damage?

Related: City Drivers Versus Country Drivers: Who's More Dangerous?

According to a 2014 report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration comparing different categories of cars and individual models by their relative "damage susceptibility," some cars are indeed more likely to incur damage or, at least, costly damage — some way more costly — while others are far less so. The report uses data compiled by the Highway Loss Data Institute in its December 2013 Insurance Collision Report, and it "reflects the collision loss experience of passenger cars, station wagons, passenger vans, pickups and utility vehicles sold in the United States in terms of the average loss payment per insured vehicle year for model years 2011-2013," NHTSA stated.

By Matt Schmitz | November 18, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2015 Volkswagen Jetta, Passat

2015VolkswagenJettaRecall

Vehicles Affected: Nearly 400 model-year 2015 Volkswagen Jetta and Passat sedans manufactured between Sept. 23 and Oct. 9 and equipped with manual front seatback recliners

The Problem: The seatback recliner retaining bracket may not engage correctly, resulting in unexpected movement of the seatback; this could distract the driver, increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: Volkswagen began notifying owners in October, and dealers will inspect the assembly of the seatback recliner retaining bracket, correcting it as necessary for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call VW at 800-893-5298 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236, or go to www.safercar.gov, for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | November 14, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Chevrolet Malibu: Car Seat Check

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After a full redesign for 2013 and an extensive update for 2014, Chevrolet's midsize sedan rolls into 2015 with few changes. Two child-safety seats fit comfortably in the Malibu's backseat, and the sedan's extra Latch anchor makes its backseat even more flexible for parents in terms of where they can install car seats with the Latch system.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Jennifer Geiger | November 13, 2014 | Comments (0)

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