Very first signs of GM ignition switch flaw emerged in 2001

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WASHINGTON — Basic Motors saw indications of flimsy ignition switches  in the Saturn Ion as early as 2001, 3 many years earlier than the first indications of a defect previously disclosed by the automaker.

According to GM’s latest filing with the Nationwide Highway Targeted traffic Security Administration, GM received a report on the “passlock” program for the Saturn Ion’;s ignition switch in 2001, in the course of pre-production development of the car. The chronology was launched today to make clear a second batch cars recalled globally final month.

The report stated the ignition switch’s problem was “low detent plunger force,” but a modify in the design and style of the ignition switch resolved the problems. GM engineers and outside investigators would later on discover a comparable issue with a Delphi-supplied ignition switch utilised in one.6 million autos among model many years 2003 and 2007.

The dilemma was fixed when Delphi started using a various detent plunger and spring to improve the torque in the switch.

In a 2003 report, a service technician observed that a vehicle had stalled even though driving, and mentioned that “[t]he owner had several keys on the important ring,” and recommended that “[t]he further bodyweight of the keys had worn out the ignition switch.”

In its prior filings with NHTSA, the very first warning signal that GM disclosed came in 2004, about the time the Chevrolet Cobalt went on sale.

The fact that ignition switch troubles with the Saturn Ion predate problems with the Chevrolet Cobalt also raises queries about why GM did not recall the Chevrolet HHR, Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Ion and Saturn Sky at the identical time as the Chevrolet Cobalt and Pontiac G5.

GM recalled the automobiles in 2 batches: the Cobalt and G5 on Feb. 13, and the rest on Feb. 25.

GM now is telling drivers to eliminate all things from their essential ring aside from the ignition important until finally the repairs are finished, and that even afterward they ought to not place something but the car’;s crucial fob back onto the ring.

You can attain Gabe Nelson at

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