Recall Alert: GM SUVs, BMWs, and Korean-Made Suzukis

By Jacob Brown | August 20, 2012
More than 350,000 people should be getting letters in the mail sometime soon warning of imminent malfunctions, fires, or other impending automotive doom raining down upon them if they don't act soon. Three automakers—"Old" GM, BMW, and Suzuki—just issued recalls for various issues. As always, here's a rundown of what they cover, and to whom you should speak if your vehicle is affected.
Chevrolet, GMC, Saab, Isuzu, and Buick midsize SUVs recalled for short-circuiting windows The only midsize SUV this recall misses is the Oldsmobile Bravada, which left production after the 2002 model year. As for the rest of 'em, 2006 and 2007 model year Chevrolet TrailBlazer and TrailBlazer EXT, GMC Envoy and Envoy XL, Saab 9-7x, Isuzu Ascender, and Buick Rainier SUVs all fall under the recall for corrosion-prone door modules that control their power windows. As a result, it could cause the power windows in the above vehicles to only work intermittently. In severe cases, it could even cause a fire.
The bad news about all of this: The recall affects 249,260 vehicles. The good news: You only have to worry about it if you're in Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin, or the District of Columbia. Or your SUV was originally sold in one of those states.
General Motors and Isuzu have not yet finalized a solution to fix the problems. For more information regarding the recall, Buick owners may contact the owner center at (800) 521-7300, Chevrolet owners at (866) 694-6546, and GMC owners at (866) 996-9463. Isuzu owners will be notified by Isuzu Motors. Owners may contact Isuzu customer service at (800) 255-6727. Saab owners will be notified by Saab Cars North America and for inquiries, owners may call Saab customer service at (855) 880-0808. Neither Isuzu nor Saab sell new vehicles in North America anymore. If all that sounds too complicated, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will also field questions at (888) 327-4236, referencing campaign number 12V406000.
BMW's recalled due to possible radiator fan shorting General Motors SUV owners don't have to feel alone about their recall woes, though, as BMW is facing some shorting electronics problems of its own. Replacement fans in 585 BMW 1, 3, 5, 6, and 6 Series vehicles are being recalled for possible shorting, leading to engines overheating and potential fires. Aftermarket Valeo radiator fans with parts numbers 696121, 696273, and 696275 are being recalled after finding that a metal-oxide semiconductor on the circuit board has the potential to fail. Such fans were installed on 2008 to 2011 BMW 1 Series, 2006 to 2011 3 Series, 2000 to 2009 5 Series, 2004 and 2005 6 Series, and 2006 to 2007 7 Series sedans.
Valeo is already starting to contact owners of affected vehicles and is replacing the fans free of charge. In fact, Valeo—not BMW—is overseeing the entire recall. For further information, contact Valeo at (888) 718-2536 or call the NHTSA at (888) 327-4236, referencing campaign number 12E029000.
Suzuki Reno and Forenza recalled for headlight shorting
Suzuki is recalling 2004 to 2006 Forenza sedans and 2005 to 2006 Reno hatchbacks for potentially faulty headlights. Because of poor contact between the terminals, wires can overheat and melt, forcing the headlights not to work. That can lead to reduced visibility and an accident. Suzuki is set to start notifying owners of the 101,688 potentially affected vehicles starting in September. It plans to re-crimp headlight wires free of charge in order to prevent faulty connections. Despite being built by Korean Daewoo—a General Motors subsidiary—for Suzuki, the Japanese automaker will continue to be the sole point of contact for repairing the headlight connection. Owners with further questions regarding the recalled headlights can call Suzuki at (714) 996-7040 or contact the NHTSA directly at (888) 327-4236, referencing campaign number 12V397000. Source: NHTSA (GM, BMW, Suzuki)