Video: GM adds more than 3 million cars to recalls

posted at 9:21 am on June 17, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

The coincidences of Treasury divestment continued yesterday when GM announced it would add another 3.2 million cars to its recalls this year. The latest recall involves the same ignition-switch problem that GM and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration ignored until after Treasury sold its GM shares late last year. The model years now go back to 2000, which should raise plenty of questions about how everyone missed this while the US government owned a stake in GM:

General Motors announced today another ignition-switch recall for an additional 3.16 million vehicles. The recall is expected to increase the financial cost to $700 million from $400 million in its second quarter.

It’s been more than four months after GM began recalling 2.6 million small cars to fix ignition switches that the company says have been involved in at least 54 crashes and 13 deaths.

General Motors has now recalled about 20 million cars this year in North America and automobiles exported around the world.

With this deluge of recalls, one might wonder just how quickly GM can get these cars fixed. It’s a good question, and CBS Atlanta answers that it might take all year. One dealer has cars stacked up in their sales lot, and the backlog keeps growing:

The scale of this recall is simply staggering, and makes the question of timing even more acute. This problem obviously began before the bailout of the automakers, beginning in 2008 by George W. Bush and amplified considerably by Barack Obama in 2009, mainly on behalf of the unions and at the expense of senior investors. Obama certainly took credit for it, claiming in 2012 that “GM is alive and Osama bin Laden is dead” because of his leadership.

However, the problems of the ignition switch began arising during the same period. GM has already fired 15 people for their part in sloughing off the defect, but the NHTSA still has not answered for why the government regulator failed to respond to a number of reports of serious issues with the GM ignition switch and its airbag deployment failures, even when deaths were reported from it. Treasury didn’t fully divest itself of GM stock until last December, when Obama announced that his bailout worked. “Today, that bet has paid off,” Obama said in taking credit for rescuing GM.

Now that bet is starting to look like a case of insider trading. Did the White House deliberately ignore this defect until it could unload the stock? Having 20 million cars recalled in six months is a singular event for any automaker, and the timing certainly looks suspicious. If any other investor dumped his shares under these circumstances, the SEC and the Department of Justice would have had investigations humming after the first five million recalls.

Congress’ investigation is still under way, and looking at both GM and the NHTSA:

In the last 2 1/2 months, congressional investigators have received more than 1 million pages of documents from GM and 15,000 from NHTSA, who has come under scrutiny for not ordering a recall sooner. At the subcommittee’s first hearing in April, Barra declined to answer many questions, saying she would wait until Valukas finished his report.

I wonder if the NHTSA will have a Lois Lerner-like “hard drive failure” soon.

Related: I’m pretty darned stoked about my new 2015 Subaru Forester. I’m sure there will be a recall or two — my previous Honda CR-V, which I drove for nearly 13 years and just gave to my son and daughter-in-law, had at least a half-dozen, some airbag related — but I’d be surprised if they ever had to pull the entire fleet off the streets. It handles very well, gets good gas mileage for its class, and the Eyesight adaptive response system is much better than I had anticipated.


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GM is saved!!!!!

Electrongod on June 17, 2014 at 9:22 AM

At this rate, they’ll be recalling cars that you didn’t build that yet.

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 9:24 AM

I wonder if the NHTSA will have a Lois Lerner-like “hard drive failure” soon.

I would expect many hard drive failures in the presents of Lois..

/

Electrongod on June 17, 2014 at 9:24 AM

presence……

Electrongod on June 17, 2014 at 9:25 AM

Government Motors
Government Healthcare
At this point …

M240H on June 17, 2014 at 9:26 AM

Why bother GM? After all they “didn’t build that”. /

FOWG1 on June 17, 2014 at 9:28 AM

At this point, what kind of idiot do you have to be to buy a Government Motors vehicle at ANY price?

Well, there are lots of idiots out there as evidenced by Obama’s second term.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:29 AM

Obama kept it all covered up to get GM stock up so the taxpayers would not take a total 100% loss on the Obama takeover of GM…

albill on June 17, 2014 at 9:29 AM

Achmed Don’t Windsurf.

Ben Hur on June 17, 2014 at 9:30 AM

Whoops. Wrong thread.

Ben Hur on June 17, 2014 at 9:31 AM

Obama kept it all covered up to get GM stock up so the taxpayers would not take a total 100% loss on the Obama takeover of GM…

albill on June 17, 2014 at 9:29 AM

GM is going to be in bankruptcy again before Obama (required by the Constitution) leaves office.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:32 AM

Whoops. Wrong thread.

Ben Hur on June 17, 2014 at 9:31 AM

Great Apocalypse Now inference though.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:33 AM

Can someone remind the class of when the last time a Congressional Investigative Committee referred any big fish for prosecution. And to whom was that referral?

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 9:34 AM

Now that bet is starting to look like a case of insider trading. Did the White House deliberately ignore this defect until it could unload the stock? Having 20 million cars recalled in six months is a singular event for any automaker, and the timing certainly looks suspicious.

Yeah, but I’m inclined to give this White House the benefit of the doubt, Ed. It doesn’t sound like them to be either negligent or deceptive in this manner. It’s probably just an honest oversight on their part….ok, I can’t type this anymore with a straight face.

The real question is how many people have died as a result of this defect. We need to seriously start tallying up a body count here with these various scandals and the lives they’ve claimed.

Doughboy on June 17, 2014 at 9:36 AM

Can someone remind the class of when the last time a Congressional Investigative Committee referred any big fish for prosecution. And to whom was that referral?

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 9:34 AM

As I keep reminding people, Eric Holder isn’t the ONLY prosecutor in America who can bring charges. There are 50 (57 if you aren’t racist) States Attorney General. Those guys need to start doing their jobs and charging these people with crimes against their citizens.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:37 AM

… It’s probably just an honest oversight hard-disk crash on their part…
Doughboy on June 17, 2014 at 9:36 AM

:)

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s largest automaker, expanded a 14-month-old recall of more than 2 million vehicles for faulty air bags after supplier Takata Corp. told customers further fixes may be needed.

I don’t like the GM bailout, either, but not reporting on other vehicle manufacturer’s recalls as well is dishonest and is clearly political red meat.

Dr. ZhivBlago on June 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

We bought a Honda. I don’t have that worry.

JellyToast on June 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

The real question is how many people have died as a result of this defect. We need to seriously start tallying up a body count here with these various scandals and the lives they’ve claimed.

Doughboy on June 17, 2014 at 9:36 AM

More than died at Benghazi, fewer than died when Janet Reno massacred the Branch Davidians at Waco is my guess,

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:39 AM

As I keep reminding people, Eric Holder isn’t the ONLY prosecutor in America who can bring charges. There are 50 (57 if you aren’t racist) States Attorney General. Those guys need to start doing their jobs and charging these people with crimes against their citizens.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:37 AM

Well you can count Kentucky out. Our AG pretty much has quit and refuses to do what the Democrat Governor tells him to do.

Johnnyreb on June 17, 2014 at 9:39 AM

so if GM is dead

does this mean Bin Laden is alive?

renalin on June 17, 2014 at 9:42 AM

Government Motors. Small bananas. I want to recall the gummint.

vnvet on June 17, 2014 at 9:43 AM

I don’t like the GM bailout, either, but not reporting on other vehicle manufacturer’s recalls as well is dishonest and is clearly political red meat.

Dr. ZhivBlago on June 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Unfortunately, it’s been found that several Audi and Toyota recalls were for false causes – it was just a sandbox for trade war.

(But now that much ‘import’ manufacturing is domestic, maybe we don’t see it as much anymore(?))

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 9:44 AM

I’m willing to write off the entire GM debt is they successfully recall their sponsor, Barry “Barack” Soetoro. The model is clearly defective and doesn’t function according to its manual, aka “The Constitution”.

Rix on June 17, 2014 at 9:45 AM

so if GM is dead

does this mean Bin Laden is alive?

renalin on June 17, 2014 at 9:42 AM

Since we’ve never seen the pictures… I don’t accept anything this Regime tells us without corroborating evidence.

Given that Al Queida is hours to days away from taking Baghdad, what difference does it make?

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:45 AM

Given that Al Queida is hours to days away from taking Baghdad

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:45 AM

Wait. What? I haven’t read about this. Even at HotAir. They say it’s just some cool group fighting Sterling Archer.

faraway on June 17, 2014 at 9:50 AM

I have a bud who just bought a brand spanking new Chev pickup off the lot, 17 miles on it, some kind of dark red color, all the options except sunroof.

I said “You bought WHAT?” and then “Race you in my Hemi.”

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 9:56 AM

I have a bud who just bought a brand spanking new Chev pickup off the lot, 17 miles on it, some kind of dark red color, all the options except sunroof.

I said “You bought WHAT?” and then “Race you in my Hemi.”

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 9:56 AM

I’d buy a F-150 over either any day.

That would be my next vehicle but for the (necessarily) skyrocketing cost of Obamagas.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 9:58 AM

so if GM is dead

does this mean Bin Laden is alive?

renalin on June 17, 2014 at 9:42 AM

Bin Laden is commander of the International Space Station.

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Nothing against the F-150 other than it’s so brick-like, slab sides and wheels too small for the body. The Raptor is cool but I’m not paying $50 large for a two door PU.

We’ll see how the Ram quality holds up over the long term but their engineers have the body style nailed, and that motor….lordy…a few tweaks, a K&N filter….man.

Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 10:02 AM

Nothing against the F-150 other than it’s so brick-like, slab sides and wheels too small for the body. The Raptor is cool but I’m not paying $50 large for a two door PU.
We’ll see how the Ram quality holds up over the long term but their engineers have the body style nailed, and that motor….lordy…a few tweaks, a K&N filter….man.
Bishop on June 17, 2014 at 10:02 AM

Obama killed the Raptor.

2014 is it’s last year :(

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 10:20 AM

You know, if a private party sold it’s majority stake in a company just before this kind of news came out, the SEC would be investigating who knew what when and prosecuting someone for fraud.

MTinMN on June 17, 2014 at 10:22 AM

GM and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration ignored until after Treasury sold its GM shares late last year.

Remind me again what was it that Martha Stewart went to jail for?

Mark Boabaca on June 17, 2014 at 10:29 AM

You know, if a private party sold it’s majority stake in a company just before this kind of news came out, the SEC would be investigating who knew what when and prosecuting someone for fraud.
MTinMN on June 17, 2014 at 10:22 AM

Yes but Phil Mickleson went public saying he should leave the Peoples Democratic Republic of California to save millions in taxes.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 10:30 AM

If any other investor dumped his shares under these circumstances, the SEC and the Department of Justice would have had investigations humming after the first five million recalls.

Yeah, Eric Holder and his “Department of Justice” will get right on this.

Just as soon as pigs fly.

GarandFan on June 17, 2014 at 10:37 AM

See? The bailout worked !!

/S

viking01 on June 17, 2014 at 10:37 AM

Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s largest automaker, expanded a 14-month-old recall of more than 2 million vehicles for faulty air bags after supplier Takata Corp. told customers further fixes may be needed.

I don’t like the GM bailout, either, but not reporting on other vehicle manufacturer’s recalls as well is dishonest and is clearly political red meat.

Dr. ZhivBlago on June 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Takata is the manufacturer that produced the defective seat belt buckles that forced recalls of Toyotas in the U.S. back in the ’80s. At first, Toyota and Takata tried to blame it on the customers, saying that we were slobs that dropped food and other stuff in the buckles.

Ward Cleaver on June 17, 2014 at 10:44 AM

At least Al-Aaeda’s on the run.

de rigueur on June 17, 2014 at 10:44 AM

Al-Aaeda? That some sort of Islamic Verdi opera?

At least Al-Qaeda’s on the run.

de rigueur on June 17, 2014 at 10:45 AM

At least Al-Aaeda’s on the run.
de rigueur on June 17, 2014 at 10:44 AM

They are running faster to Baghdad than Hitler did to Paris.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 11:02 AM

Car makers in America made 15MM cars in 2013, GM recalls 17MM cars in 2014 – and the CEO of GM still has her job (I guess firing her would be “picking on the girl”).

Another Drew on June 17, 2014 at 11:46 AM

If insider trading is perfectly okay for anyone in Congress and their staffs, I’m pretty sure it’s okay for the Department of the Treasury to do it.

Like I say about sexual assault, it’s legal if the TSA does it to you.

slickwillie2001 on June 17, 2014 at 11:57 AM

I don’t like the GM bailout, either, but not reporting on other vehicle manufacturer’s recalls as well is dishonest and is clearly political red meat.

Dr. ZhivBlago on June 17, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Unfortunately, it’s been found that several Audi and Toyota recalls were for false causes – it was just a sandbox for trade war.

(But now that much ‘import’ manufacturing is domestic, maybe we don’t see it as much anymore(?))

Tsar of Earth on June 17, 2014 at 9:44 AM

The problem the government has with some car companies isn’t whether they are US-made or not, it’s whether the greedy UAW can sink their fangs into the company or not.

slickwillie2001 on June 17, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Osama is dead and GM is more dead.

Schadenfreude on June 17, 2014 at 12:05 PM

So, it turns out that ‘close enough for government work’ doesn’t work all that well in auto manufacturing.

Who could have guessed?

trigon on June 17, 2014 at 12:29 PM

Car makers in America made 15MM cars in 2013, GM recalls 17MM cars in 2014 – and the CEO of GM still has her job (I guess firing her would be “picking on the girl”).

Another Drew on June 17, 2014 at 11:46 AM

She’s not only an utterly inept CEOtrix, she is criminally negligent in her role in the ignition switch coverup.

In other words, if anything, she’ll move on to be CEOtrix GE or some other job.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 12:31 PM

So, it turns out that ‘close enough for government work’ doesn’t work all that well in auto manufacturing.

Who could have guessed?

trigon on June 17, 2014 at 12:29 PM

GM was producing cars that way LONG before they became Government Motors. There is a reason why they went bankrupt and this was the primary one.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 12:32 PM

We are in the best of hands. Super smart people that went to IV League schools.

jukin3 on June 17, 2014 at 12:36 PM

So, it turns out that ‘close enough for government work’ doesn’t work all that well in auto manufacturing.

Who could have guessed?

trigon on June 17, 2014 at 12:29 PM

Doesn’t work all that well in medical care either, or pretty much anything else into which government sticks its grubby fingers.

hawkeye54 on June 17, 2014 at 12:40 PM

We are in the best of hands. Super smart people that went to IV League schools.

jukin3 on June 17, 2014 at 12:36 PM

Not to mention assembly line people who graduated from some outstanding public schools.

hawkeye54 on June 17, 2014 at 12:41 PM

We are in the best of hands. Super smart people that went to IV League schools.

jukin3 on June 17, 2014 at 12:36 PM

The super smart people actually are the ones that pick up a trade rather than go 200+ grand into debt at age 21 with no income.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 12:42 PM

The problem the government has with some car companies isn’t whether they are US-made or not, it’s whether the greedy UAW can sink their fangs into the company or not.

slickwillie2001 on June 17, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Sure, but the UAW doesn’t design these cars…the engineers working for the company does, and are approved by the appropriate CEOs.

For decades UAW-built American-designed cars were wonderful…but nowadays those same cars suck. That’s not logical.

These recalls aren’t even due to shoddy workmanship on the assembly line, so I can’t blame the unions nor their workers for this. Non-union built vehicles built by other companies get recalled, too. Should one say that they were recalled because their assembly line workers aren’t unionized? That would be hogwash as well.

I think it’s sloppy engineering with a healthy dose of pushing the technology envelope always a little farther than it’s ready to go at any given time. For some recalls, the technology required for the ridiculous Federally-mandated emission and fuel efficient edicts might be to blame. On the engineering side, all I’ll say is that the latest generations of “engineers” can’t hold a candle to those of, say, the 1920s through the early 1970s.

In general, I think that much of the stuff we buy nowadays is little more than junk. And it doesn’t matter if it were made in China or in a union shop or in a non-union shop. We’re just being sold junk with poor customer service on the other end contacted out to Indians, Filipinos or Nigerians for all I know.

And the reason they get away with it is because there is too much chumminess and collusion amongst the major manufacturers, with very little competition.

Dr. ZhivBlago on June 17, 2014 at 12:53 PM

Ford still makes high quality vehicles and does it with UAW workers. Ford also restructured back in the 90′s in response to how the market was moving when GM and Chrysler did not. End result: Ford survived when GM and Chrysler BOTH should have ceased to be.

I think Ford would be better off without the union (so would the workers) but you have to blame imbecilic management for the demise of GM and Chrysler.

ConstantineXI on June 17, 2014 at 12:58 PM

20MM recalls?
Why, that’s almost as many cars as emails the IRS has lost.

Another Drew on June 17, 2014 at 6:14 PM

“…I think Ford would be better off without the union (so would the workers) but you have to blame imbecilic management for the demise of GM and Chrysler.”

And now Chrysler is being run by FixItAgainTony….shakes head….

Another Drew on June 17, 2014 at 6:15 PM