SAFETY RECALL UPDATE – November 23, 2014

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Only a small number of National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recalls were released this week (for a welcome change!); leaving this technician to believe that great things have been accomplished this year in the realm of  automobile safety. A couple of German imports comprise the field of today’s safety recall update and neither manage the minimum 100,000-units required, however when two is all that you have – run with two. Log onto frequently for the latest NHTSA safety recall updates, automotive news and views, and millions of listings on new and used cars, trucks, vans, and SUVs.

Remember to look inside of the driver door jamb (most vehicles) for he production date (Month/Year). This information can help you determine whether or not your vehicle is currently under a NHTSA safety recall campaign.

NHTSA Campaign Number: 14V598000
Mercedes-Benz Recall Campaign Number: 2014090008

Vehicles Affected: Certain 2015 Mercedes-Benz C300 4Matic and Mercedes-Benz C400 4Matic vehicles manufactured from March 28, 2014 through September 18, 2014. Approximately 10,509 vehicles are expected for inclusion in this recall campaign.

Cause: On some vehicles the steering coupling interlock mechanism is not locked in place allowing the sliding shaft, which is part of the steering column, to become disengaged from the steering coupling socket due to vibrations, steering thrust, or load feedback from the road surface.

Concern: If the sliding shaft becomes disengaged from the steering coupling socket, the driver may experience noises, steering backlash, and in a worst case, loss of steering control, which may increase the risk of a motor vehicle crash.

Correction: Mercedes-Benz has notified owners with specific instructions for locating qualified dealers that will inspect the steering coupling interlock mechanism to verify that it is in the locked position, free of charge. The recall began on October 1, 2014. Owners may contact Mercedes-Benz customer service at 1-800-367-6372.

NOTE: If I owned a Benz in this flavor, I would have this problem checked out more sooner than later. That whole “loss of steering control” thing is a deal breaker for me. How about you?

NHTSA Campaign Number: 14V670000
Volkswagen Recall Campaign Number: 72F1

Vehicles Affected: Certain 2015 Volkswagen Jetta and Volkswagen Passat vehicles manufactured from September 23, 2014 through October 9, 2014, and equipped with manual front seatback recliners. Approximately 393 vehicles are expected for inclusion under the parameters of this recall campaign.

Cause: In the affected vehicles, the seatback recliner retaining bracket may not engage correctly, resulting in unexpected movement of the seatback.

Concern: Unexpected movement of the driver’s seatback may distract the driver, increasing the risk of a motor vehicle crash.

Correction: Volkswagen will notify owners with detailed instructions for locating qualified dealers that will inspect the assembly of the seatback recliner retaining bracket, correcting it as necessary, free of charge. The recall began in October 2014. Owners may contact Volkswagen customer service at 1-800-893-5298.

NOTE: If you own one of these cars, good core strength could actually save lives. Work on your abs, daily and get this repaired as soon as possible.

S.M. Darby

S.M. Darby

I am a freelance author with over 25 years of experience as a professional, ASE certified automotive technician and shop owner, muscle car enthusiast, avid street racer, and classic car restoration specialist.