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This happens to all of us, but at least the GMC Terrain might do something about it. We’ve all been driving at night when oncoming traffic blinds us with brighter than holy lights! Nearly one million GMC Terrain models need to be recalled due to having too bright headlights. 

Potential recall for GMC Terrain models alert 

A red GMC Terrain small SUV is on display.
The GMC Terrain | Bill Pugliano via Getty Images

Tons of GMC Terrain models need to go in for service due to having headlights that are way too bright. The headlights have been blinding other drivers for quite some time. Models affected by the recall include over 725,000 Terrain models from 2010 to 2017. 

According to Car and Driver, the headlights may create glare to other motorists in proximity in certain weather conditions such as snow, fog, and more. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has collected data on these models. 

This has been an ongoing issue for years. In 2019, General Motors asked the NHTSA to dismiss the case because, along with a lack of crashes, only one customer asked about the situation. 

Will General Motors repair the Terrain models? 

Maybe, we’re waiting to see the next steps unfold. In 2019, GM asked NHTSA to provide an exemption for the GMC Terrain headlight problem. They suggested that the reflection had no effect on vehicle safety for surrounding and oncoming vehicles. 

Plus, the headlight supplier, Stanley, redesigned replaced headlamps with graining on certain surfaces to reflect the too-bright light inadvertently. They reportedly prevent the reflections that cause the issue. 

General Motors shared that only one customer has brought up this issue, and they haven’t heard about any other problems associated with this issue. 

The headlights haven’t caused any crashes or injuries that GM is aware of. The customer complained that their left headlamp seems to have a portion of the light that shines brightly on trees near a 45-degree angle. That’s it. 

However, the NHTSA posted a Denial of Petition document to the Federal Register on Thursday. NHTSA reported that the headlights in the affected Terrain models are just too bright from a few different vantage points. 

The reflection of the headlights’ housing illuminates two small areas high above the vehicle. When measured accordingly to federal model vehicle safety standards, they return approximately 450 to 740 candela. That’s three times brighter than allowed! 

What happens if there is a Terrain recall? 

2022 GMC Terrain SLT compact SUV in red driving on a strip of highway
2022 GMC Terrain SLT | GMC

General Motors has already replaced the headlights in some GMC Terrain models. So, if they issue a recall, it shouldn’t be too much of a hassle to fix the rest. GM already knows which headlights to order. 

But no promises have been made. GM plans to review the NHTSA’s decision before exploring the next potential steps. It’s possible that GM will try to keep avoiding this issue as they may not see it as a dangerous problem. 

If your Terrain model is recalled, then you will be notified about the issue via mail. People are generally notified about six weeks after a recall is official. You can also enter your 17-digit Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to see if your vehicle is at risk on the NHTSA site. 

Once a recall is made, the automaker will replace the headlights free of charge. But you will need to find the time to take your SUV in for service. We’ll keep an eye on this problem and keep you informed.


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