NHTSA: One Million GM Ignition Switch Cars Still Need Repairs
About 60 percent of recalled cars fixed so far.
Of the approximately 2.6 million General Motors cars recalled in the U.S. for defective ignition switches, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says nearly 1 million still need to be repaired. Although GM has managed to fix 60 percent of the affected vehicles, NHTSA is urging car owners to take their vehicles in to dealers for the free fix.
The ignition switches in certain GM vehicles can unexpectedly move to the "Off" position while driving, which can cause the car to stall and may disable the airbags in a crash. The problem has been linked to more than 27 deaths, according to a victim compensation fund run by attorney Kenneth Feinberg. Because GM delayed recalling cars and didn't disclose the fault quickly enough, the automaker agreed to pay a $35 million fine to NHTSA.
In May, GM appointed an engineering executive director to a new position, president of global vehicle safety, in a bid to keep a closer watch on potential safety defects that could lead to recalls. A month later, GM fired 15 employees after a scathing report found about the ignition switch problem revealed what CEO Mary Barras described as a, "pattern of incompetence and neglect."
Until recalled cars have been properly fixed by dealers installing a new ignition switch, GM recommends owners remove any keychains or other items from the ignition key. Vehicles affected by the recall include the 2003-2007 Saturn ION, 2005-2010 Chevrolet Cobalt, 2006-2011 Chevrolet HHR, 2007-2010 Pontiac G5, 2006-2010 Pontiac Solstice, and 2007-2010 Saturn Sky.