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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Safety

Ferrari Recalls 458 and California Models

On: Mon, May 21, 2012 at 3:32PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Ferrari Recalls 458 and California Models test 1-1

It seems that the Ferrari 458 can't catch a break.  First there were rumors flying around about their supposed propensity to catch fire thanks to a defective bonding adhesive used to attach the heat-shield.  Now, it seems that Ferrari is issuing a recall of 458 models, and California models are getting on some of the action too.

Though it is only a handful of models—74 at the time of this writing, one has to wonder just how many more of this very same recall might show up in the near future.  It seems that certain 2011-2012 Ferrari 458 models and some 2012 California models are being brought back in because the crankshaft may have been incorrectly machined at the factory.  This defect could cause the engine to fail completely without notice, which could become fatal given the speeds these cars are capable of traveling at.  Hopefully this is the last we hear of crankshaft issues on 458 models, or any Ferraris for that matter, but only time will tell for sure.  Read on for the full report ...

Ford Recalls 10,500 New Cars!

On: Fri, May 11, 2012 at 9:47AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Ford Mustang test 2

This week Ford issued a recall of 10,500 select 2012-2013 Mustangs, 2012 Expeditions and Navigators, and 2011-2012 F-150s due to what they claim is a transmission range sensor that was calibrated incorrectly. Basically, this means that when the driver shifts into what he or she thinks is reverse, the car may not actually be in reverse. Or another scenario may be that when the transmission actually is shifted into reverse, the "R" on the dashboard may not light up to let the driver know the car is in gear. The last issue that may be caused by this defective sensor is that even though the car is in reverse, the reverse lights on the rear of the car may not actually light up, which could cause a whole host of issues for any adults or children that happen to be walking behind one of these cars at just the wrong moment.  

Ford is planning to notify owners beginning at the end of June, but owners may contact Ford before then at 1-866-436-7332 to schedule an appointment for a free inspect and replacement of the sensor if necessary. Read on for the full report from Safercar.gov.

Chrysler Recalls 119,000 Charger And 300 Models!

On: Tue, May 8, 2012 at 10:34AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Dodge Charger test 2

As with most things in life, it's the little things that will get you. This not only applies to people, but to cars too. The new Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger have made a giant splash in the world of automotive excitement, but this week Chrysler had to quell some of that enthusiasm when it issued a recall of 119,072 Chargers and 300s made as 2011 and 2012 models due to a problem with overheating power distribution centers which could cause the ABS/ESC systems to malfunction and become inoperable. Having a non-functioning ABS/ESC system could increase the likelihood of a crash -- which is a big deal, but started off with a very little thing.

Germans Working On All Weather Transformer Tires

On: Fri, Apr 27, 2012 at 11:13AM | By: Chris Weiss

Germans Working On All Weather Transformer Tires test 2

Sensor systems are currently being used in all types of vehicular applications. Cars can now maintain lanes, stop automatically and parallel park using advanced sensor systems. Really, those are all things the driver should be quite capable of himself. Over in Germany, researchers are applying sensors to a function that drivers have little control over: tire traction.

A team of Leipzig University researchers led by Detlef Reimer is working on what's being called the world's first intelligent tire. The tire attempts to take the designation "all weather" a little more seriously by monitoring terrain conditions and adapting itself to fit them.


Not The Volt! GM Battery Explodes

On: Fri, Apr 13, 2012 at 12:40PM | By: Chris Weiss

Not The Volt! GM Battery Explodes test 2

GM just doesn't have much luck with batteries. Earlier in the year, the NHTSA concluded an investigation into potential fire issues with the Chevy Volt's lithium ion battery. Chevy issued a proactive fix; the NHTSA was satisfied; and the automaker moved on to other things, things like a Congressional hearing called to rehash the whole situation. And now it has another battery problem.

On Wednesday morning, GM experienced a battery explosion at its Warren, Michigan plant. Several workers were injured during the explosion, and GM evacuated about 80 employees.

GM was quick to come out and say that the explosion had nothing to do with the Chevy Volt or any other production model. According to the automaker, it occurred during extreme testing of a prototype battery.

Honda Recalls Half A Million CR-V And Pilot Models

On: Wed, Apr 11, 2012 at 9:59AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Honda Recall test 2

Although a recall of cars that are no less than eight years old may not have ordinarily been newsworthy, the fact that most of the Honda CR-V and Pilots that were produced from 2002-2004 are still on the road makes Honda's latest recall of 554,428 models pretty significant.

It seems that due to a defect in the wiring harness, the terminal ends of the harness may melt which in turn could cause the low beams of these cars to stop working altogether. With such a large number of cars recalled, odds are if you are the owner of a CR-V produced from 2002-2004 or a Pilot produced in 2003, your car is more than likely susceptible to this defect. Honda has announced it will begin its recall about April 24th, but owners can contact Honda at 1-888-999-1009 to set up a free inspection of their car.

Read on for the full report ...

AT&T Working On GPS-Based Vibrating Steering Wheel

On: Wed, Apr 4, 2012 at 3:50PM | By: Chris Weiss

AT&T Working On GPS-Based Vibrating Steering Wheel test 2

It looks like cars of the future are going to rattle and shake like video game controllers. Just a few days ago, we saw the vibrating driver seat in the new Cadillac XTS. Now we have some news of another vibrating component being developed by AT&T Labs and Carnegie Mellon University.

AT&T Labs is working on a haptic steering wheel that's capable of sending vibrations based upon GPS navigation. If you need to turn right, for instance, a series of vibrations rotate clockwise around the steering wheel, prompting you to turn. The steering wheel has a series of 20 actuators integrated inside, which can vibrate in a multitude of patterns. The motors can also intensify vibrations as you get closer and closer to a given turn.

BMW Recalls 367,000 Cars

On: Wed, Apr 4, 2012 at 10:19AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

BMW Recalls 367,000 Cars test 2

Although BMW may indeed be the Ultimate Driving Machine, as it turns out, even they are not built flawlessly. BMW has issued a recall of 367,682 vehicles consisting of 5-Series and 6-Series models built 2004-2010 as well as M5 models built from 2006-2010 and M6 models built from 2007-2010.

It seems that the positive battery cable may have been improperly connected to the trunk floor, which may cause the bolt connecting the cable to loosen. This loosening may then cause an increase in electrical resistance and as a result, the connection may overheat to the point of catching fire. The car does not even have to be running to be a potential fire risk, which is why BMW has advised owners to keep their cars parked outdoors until they have had the necessary repairs.

Read on for the full report ...

Honda's Hilarious April Fools' Anti-Theft System

On: Tue, Apr 3, 2012 at 1:42PM | By: Chris Salamone

Honda's Terii test 2

Year after year, Honda consistently ranks highly in reliability and value. But another, less advertised, Honda attribute also tops some lists. Few automakers, in the history of cars, can attest to having a longer track record for attracting thievery. And even fewer still are the automakers which have mastered the art of April Fools’ advertising.

Honda usually spearheads the list of most stolen vehicles from the National Insurance Crime Bureau – but all that is about to change. Honda plans to address would-be criminals and nervous consumers in one fell swoop. In 2013, Honda vehicles will feature a new security technology which attempts to prevent theft with negotiations and psychoanalysis. Say hello to TERII, and what is perhaps the best April Fools’ joke in recent memory.

While TERII will offer some familiar features, like keyless entry and voice command, Honda’s latest anti-theft system is unlike anything currently available on the mass market. Meaning, buyers could pay top dollar to get a celebrity-like, aftermarket security unit, but Honda plans to make artificial intelligence security mainstream.

Study: Breathalyzer Systems Work In Fighting Drunk Driving

On: Tue, Apr 3, 2012 at 10:43AM | By: Chris Weiss

Study: Breathalyzer Systems Work In Fighting Drunk Driving test 2

According to a new study, ignition interlock systems, which require drivers to blow into a breathalyzer before starting their cars, are effective at cutting the number of repeat offenders. Some jurisdictions require that those convicted of drunk driving install interlock systems in their cars, and the study took a look at the results in one such location.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety conducted its research in relation to Washington state, where interlock systems are mandatory for anyone convicted of driving under the influence (DUI). It looked at DUI conviction records from January 1999 to June 2006. In 2004, Washington expanded its mandatory interlock law to include everyone convicted of DUI. The original 1999 law included only repeat offenders, high-BAC offenders, and those who refused an alcohol test. So the IIHS was able to study the law's effect on first-time simple offenders, noting a 12 percent decrease in repeat offenses in the second quarter of 2006 over what would have been expected without the interlock requirement.

Cadillac Seats To Vibrate As Crash Warning

On: Mon, Apr 2, 2012 at 4:29PM | By: Chris Weiss

Cadillac Seats To Vibrate As Crash Warning test 2

GM plans to launch a vibrating driver's seat in the upcoming 2013 Cadillac XTS. The seat isn't designed to relax or massage the driver, but rather to warn him of impending dangers.

The new system, which GM calls the Cadillac Safety Alert Seat, uses directional tactile sensation - a fancy way of saying a vibrating seat bottom. The seat vibrates on the left side or right side, depending upon which side the danger is on. When the danger is coming from the rear or front, the seat vibrates on both sides. For instance, if you begin to veer over into the right line, the right side of your seat will start to vibrate as a cue to straighten out.