Is NHTSA Honda CR-V Engine Failure Investigation Leading to Massive Recall?
The Honda CR-V is the automaker’s most successful vehicle, seeing continual annual sales of over 300,000. And its recall safety record looks pretty good, with only four since 2021. But an ongoing National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigation could spell real trouble for Honda.
What is the Honda CR-V recall about?
As we reported in December, the NHTSA launched a probe into the excessive amount of reports it is getting over CR-Vs losing power on the highway. It is an abrupt loss of power, and at highway speeds can lead to serious accidents. The cause, from field reports obtained by the NHTSA, is rear-end differentials locking up due to lubricant leaking out.
When this happens, it can cause the drive shaft to wrap around itself or fracture. Either way, it immediately slows down and then stops. So the NHTSA says it is looking at how many as well as the severity of the incidents when this happens.
Are there other CR-V recalls in the works?
Honda, for its part, is monitoring the probe and complying with the NHTSA’s requests, as well as conducting its own review. The affected models are Honda CR-V and HR-V SUVs built from 2018 to 2022. This takes in over 1.72 million vehicles. These incidents occur on all-wheel-drive models.
The federal government says all automakers must submit field reports and findings of defective components to the NHTSA. If it determines there is a reason to have a recall, the manufacturer is notified and the recall is filed. This is the largest defect investigation the NHTSA has for 2022, according to Reuters.
Besides the above-mentioned Honda SUVs, it has a concurrent investigation of 2017 to 2019 CR-Vs and 2018 and 2019 Accord sedans. This is over reports of “sudden activation of the vehicle’s automatic-emergency-braking system” for those models. In this investigation, there have been alleged six injuries after collisions occurred. It has received over 270 reports of these activation incidents occurring.
How long do NHTSA investigations take?
Since December there has been no further word on where the NHTSA stands in these Honda matters. This year only one recall has been issued for the CR-V. It is for airbag system wiring causing a slower inflation rate than required.
Its only recall in 2021 was over a clip inside the gas tank that could become loose, causing irregular readings of the gas gauge. And of the two recalls issued in 2021, one was because of improper seat belt tensioner releases and the other was for fuel pump failures.
NHTSA investigations normally take about one year to conduct. It either closes them if it determines there is no further reason to investigate, or it or the manufacturer determines a recall is necessary. So right now it is four months into this issue. So we’ll probably see it resolved before the end of 2023.