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From Products Liability Law Daily, September 25, 2015

Metallic debris in engine, malfunctioning brake light switch prompt recall of over 560,000 Hyundai vehicles

By John Dumoulin

In two separate recalls, Hyundai Motor America has recalled approximately 569,500 vehicles due to metallic debris in the engine and a malfunctioning brake light switch.

Sonata recall. Approximately 470,000 model year 2011-2012 Sonata vehicles manufactured from December 11, 2009, to April 12, 2012, at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama and equipped with either a 2.0 liter or 2.4 liter Gasoline Direct injection engine because metallic debris may not have been fully removed during manufacturing of the engine crankshaft in the affected vehicles. If the debris was not completely removed, oil flow may be restricted through the connecting rod bearings, causing connecting rod damage. A worn connecting rod bearing will produce a metallic, cyclic knocking noise from the engine and possible engine failure, according to Hyundai. Engine failure would result in a vehicle stall, increasing the risk of a crash, Hyundai warned (NHTSA Recall Notice, No. 15V568, Report receipt date: September 10, 2015).

Accent recall. In addition, Hyundai has recalled an estimated 99,500 model year 2009-2011 Hyundai Accent vehicles manufactured from March 1, 2009, to February 11, 2011, because the brake light switch in the affected vehicles may malfunction. A malfunctioning brake light switch may cause the brake lights to not illuminate when the brake pedal is depressed or may cause an inability to deactivate the cruise control by depressing the brake pedal. Additionally, a malfunctioning brake light switch may also prevent the shifter from being moved out of the PARK position, according to Hyundai. Failure to illuminate the brake lights during braking or the inability to disengage the cruise control could increase the risk of a crash, Hyundai reported. This recall is an expansion of recall 13V-113 (NHTSA Recall Notice, No. 15V566, Report receipt date: September 8, 2015).

Remedies. For recall 15V568, Hyundai will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the vehicles and replace the engine assembly, as necessary, free of charge. Additionally, Hyundai Motor America will increase the warranty for the engine sub-assembly (short block) to 10 years/120,000 miles for both original and subsequent owners of 2011 and 2012 Sonatas manufactured at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama equipped with 2.0 liter and 2.4 liter Gasoline Direct injection engines. An interim notification will be mailed by November 2, 2015. A second notification will be mailed when parts are available.

For recall, 15V566, Hyundai will notify owners, and dealers will replace the brake switch, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin November 2, 2015.

Contact information. Owners may contact Hyundai customer service at 1-855-671-3059 or by visiting www.HyundaiUSA.com. Hyundai’s number for recall 15V568 is 132, and its number for recall 15V566 is 131. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Companies: Hyundai Motor America

MainStory: TopStory MotorVehiclesNews RecallNewsStory

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