Welp, looks like GM is going to pay up for its failure to recall millions of cars. On Friday, General Motors was fined $35 million in a civil settlement with the government over its improper handling of faulty ignition switches in its cars. The defect are linked to the deaths of at least 13 people. Since the government started investigating GM, which was accused of failing to issue a timely recall on ignition switches it knew were problematic, the carmaker hasn't stopped recalling vehicles.
It's been a costly and damaging spring for GM, and the company issued another set of recalls on Thursday that brought them closer than ever to GM: Total Recall when they reached 11.1 million recalled cars in the U.S. alone, which means they're definitely going to break their previous annual recall record of 11.8 million vehicles. That's right: 2014 isn't even GM's worst recall year. At least not yet.
The previous domestic record was set in 2004, according to The Washington Post. This year's recalls cover far more than the known issues with ignition switches. The huge volume of recalls relates directly to GM's failure to quickly diagnose the problems with the car switches and subsequent scrutiny over their recall practices. In previous years, the company has reportedly issued bulletins to dealers about known issues rather than actually recalling vehicles, a practice that's under a lot of scrutiny.
1. Cars with Bad Ignition Switches
2.6 million Chevrolet Cobalts and other small GM cars were recalled for having bad ignition switches that can inadvertently switch to the “accessory” position, which is the mode when your radio works but you can't move your car. Basically, the car turns off by itself.
2. Low-Beam Headlight Problems
111,889 Chevrolet Corvettes from the 2005-7 model years for issues with "loss of headlamps."
3. Windshield Wiper Problems
19,225 2013-2014 Cadillac CTS sedans were recalled for problems with windshield wipers.
4. Steering Gear Issues
477 full-size pickup trucks were recalled for steering problems. Though it's a small recall, it's a big problem. According to GM, "the tie rod can separate from the steering rack and a crash could occur without prior warning."
5. Hydraulic Brake Problems
140,067 2014 Malibus were included in this recall, which might reduce stopping distance and could've caused accidents.
6. Brake Light Problems
A 2009 recall of the issue was expanded and includes 2,440,524 cars, including the 2004-12 Malibu, 2004-7 Malibu Maxx, 2005-10 Pontiac G6, and 2007-10 Saturn Aura.
7. Power Steering Issues
1.3 million cars were recalled for having problems that could increase the risk of a crash.
8. Being Underweight
303,000 2009-20014 Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana cars weighed under 10,000 pounds, which is against regulations dictated for those vehicles.
9. Problems with the Brake Booster Pump
63,900 2013-2014 Cadillac XTS sedans could see their engines catch fire if this one doesn't get fixed, GM said.
10. Issues with the Air Bag Sensors
The 2008-2013 Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia, 2009-2013 Chevrolet Traverse, and 2008-2010 Saturn Outlook were recalled for a total of 1.18 million cars. Wiring issues with air bag lights could cause the air bags to not deploy in an accident.