General Motors and Jeep have recalled a combined 50,000 crossovers to correct tailgate faults, while Ford and GM have issued a recall on nearly 23,000 vehicles for warning lights and chimes that may not function as designed.
GM’s is the larger of the tailgate recalls, affecting more than 36,000 Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, Saturn Outlook and GMC Acadia models sold between 2007 and 2012 to reprogram a safety system designed to prevent an open power-operated tailgate from falling shut. In these cars, the tailgate is held up by the type of hydraulic struts that will be familiar to anyone who’s owned a hatchback, minivan or crossover/SUV. The tailgates in these crossovers have an electronic safety backup designed to bring the tailgate to a gradual, controlled close if the struts become too weak to hold the door up on their own, along with providing visual and audible warnings of the problem. According to the recall, the system may not be able to stop a tailgate from falling closed quickly after it’s opened, and could allow it to fall shut, potentially injuring anyone standing near the cargo opening. GM is instructing dealers to reprogram the safety backup system and verify its proper operation.
Meanwhile, Jeep has called back more than 13,000 Cherokee models fitted with the optional power tailgate. In these cars, the power tailgate module could short-circuit and cause a fire. Jeep dealers will inspect the modules and repair/replace them as necessary.
Over at Ford, more than 18,000 Escape and Transit Connect models sold in 2014 and 2015 may not perform the expected self-test display of warning lights and chimes when the vehicle is started. Ford dealer techs will reprogram the instrument cluster in affected vehicles.
Finally, in more than 4,500 Chevrolet Sonic, Spark and Trax models from 2014 and 2015, the radio may become inoperative, which would disable the audible warning meant to warn if the door is opened with the key still in the ignition, as well as the chime that indicates an unbuckled front seatbelt. Dealers will reprogram the radio with upgraded software.