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Problems with G.M. and Ford Sedans Prompt NHTSA Investigations Involving 867,000 Vehicles

Oct 6, 2005 | The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has opened preliminary investigations into problems with coil springs in some Ford sedans and defective turn signals in some General Motors models.

The investigations could lead to recalls.

The Ford investigation was prompted by 131 complaints involving the rear coil springs in the 2000-2001 models of the Taurus and Sable sedans, which reportedly can break and puncture the rear tires. 

The inquiry involves about 467,000 vehicles. Most of the complaints came from northern states where vehicles are often subjected to salt corrosion during the winter. About half of the owners who filed complaints said there were punctures in the rear tires because of the broken coil springs.

The Taurus was among the best-selling passenger cars in the United States during the two model years in question. There have been no crashes, injuries, or fatalities linked to the Taurus and Sable review.

The NHTSA also reports a review is underway of potential turn signal malfunctions in General Motors models including the 2002 Chevrolet Malibu, Oldsmobile Alero, and Pontiac Grand Am.

After 42 complaints about a turn signal malfunction that leads to flickering or total failure of the turn signal lights and the indicator on the instrument panel, the NHTSA is looking at nearly 400,000 passenger cars.

GM recalled 2000-2001 models of the Malibu, Alero, and Grand Am to replace defective hazard switches that caused the turn signals and hazard lamps to fail in 2003.

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