Automotive Defect Investigation
The Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have opened a Preliminary Evaluation (PE21-010) to investigate complaints of malfunctions with the driver frontal air bags in certain Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC vehicles.

The ODI has received fifteen consumer complaints about certain vehicles experiencing an airbag warning light illumination and/or a failure of the airbag to deploy during an accident with significant frontal damage. Nine of the consumer complaints say the air bag malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) was illuminated and six of the incidents had significant frontal damage with failure to deploy the airbags.

A TSB, issued in March 2021, addresses air bag MIL illumination accompanied by diagnostic trouble codes B0001-1B or B0012-0D. It also reports rust particles in the connection terminal interface of the driver airbag inflator as the cause of the airbag MIL illumination. Illumination of the airbag MIL under these circumstances may result in a non-deployment of the driver’s airbag during a frontal collision and increased risk of injury to the driver.

The vehicles under investigation include:

2020-2021 Cadillac CT4
2020-2021 Cadillac CT5
2020-2021 Cadillac Escalade
2020-2021 Cadillac Escalade ESV
2020-2021 Cadillac XT5
2020-2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500
2020-2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500
2020-2021 Chevrolet Silverado 3500
2020 Chevrolet Silverado 4500HD
2020 Chevrolet Silverado 5500HD
2020 Chevrolet Silverado 6500HD
2020-2021 Chevrolet Suburban
2021 Chevrolet Suburban 1500
2020-2021 Chevrolet Tahoe
2020-2021 GMC Sierra 1500
2020-2021 GMC Sierra 2500
2020-2021 GMC Sierra 3500
2020 GMC Sierra Denali
2020-2021 GMC Yukon
2020-2021 GMC Yukon XL

ODI have opened this preliminary investigation to determine the scope and severity of the potential problem and to fully assess the potential safety-related issues. If the investigation results in a recall, an estimated 749,312 vehicles could be affected.

 Automotive Defect Investigation
Certain 2016-2020 Honda Pilot vehicles with 3.5L engines and 9-speed automatic transmissions could experience a problem with the automatic Start/Stop feature. The Honda Pilot Touring and Elite vehicles are equipped with Auto Start/Stop capability to help improve fuel efficiency. When the driver enables the system and certain operating conditions are met, the Auto Start/Stop system will automatically shut off the engine when the vehicle comes to a complete stop. The engine should automatically restarted when the driver releases the brake pedal.

The Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) has received 221 complaints and several field reports claiming that there is an issue with the Auto Start/Stop feature on certain 2016-2020 Honda Pilot vehicles. The complaints say that the Auto Start/Stop function fails to restart the engine on its own after it has come to a complete stop at a traffic light or road intersection. Some of the complainants allege that a jump was required for the vehicle to be restarted.

The ODI met with Honda on several occasions on this issue. Honda indicated that per the information provided from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) complaints and TREAD (Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability, and Documentation) reports, they have found a correlation with customers’ allegations for the Auto Start/Stop failure to restart the vehicle when the system is activated. Honda also indicated other Honda models (Honda Odyssey, Acura TLX & Acura MDX) with the 3.5L engines equipped with the 9-speed automatic transmissions experience the same failure mode.

ODI is opening this Preliminary Evaluation (PE) to determine the scope and severity of the potential problem as well as to fully assess the potential safety-related issues.

 Automotive Defect Investigation

The NHTSA have a continuing investigation into certain LGES high voltage batteries used in electric and hybrid vehicles. The investigation was prompted by the number of fire recalls on the electric and hybrid vehicles listed below. The purpose of this investigation is to find other companies that might have purchased the same or similar equipment from LG and to notify them if this defect has shown up in any vehicles they manufactured.


Recall No. 20V-107
Date: February 2020

Mercedes Benz USA notified NHTSA of a safety-related defect in one 2019 Smart ForTwo Electric Drive vehicle.
Note: This vehicle received an LG Chem high voltage battery that may contain a defect allowing for an electrical arc, which can ignite inside the battery cells, increasing the risk of a fire.


Recall No. 20V-630
Date: October 2020

Hyundai Motor America notified NHTSA of a safety-related defect in certain 2019-2020 Kona Electric vehicles. Note: The high-voltage battery system in the subject vehicles, supplied by LG, may have been produced with internal damage to certain cells of the lithium-ion battery increasing the risk of an electrical short circuit, which could result in a fire.


Recall No. 20V-701 & 21V-650
Date: November 2020

General Motors notified NHTSA of a safety defect in all 2017-2018 and certain 2019 Chevrolet Bolt EV vehicles.
Note: These vehicles were built with high voltage batteries, produced by LG, that may contain latent cell-level manufacturing defects posing a risk of fire when charged to full, or nearly full, capacity. In August 2021, GM expanded this recall to include certain 2020-2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV and 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EUV vehicles. GM stated, “the root cause of the failure is the simultaneous presence of two rare manufacturing defects in the same battery cell.”


Recall No. 21V-127
Date: March 2021

Hyundai notified NHTSA of a safety-related defect in certain 2019-2020 Kona Electric and 2020 Ioniq Electric vehicles .
Note: These vehicles are equipped with LG produced Lithium-ion battery cells where, if the Anode (Negative) tab is folded, the battery cell could allow the Lithium plating on the Anode tab to contact the Cathode resulting in an electrical short, thereby increasing the risk of a fire while parked, charging and/or driving.


Recall No. 22V-077
Date: February 2022

Chrysler notified NHTSA of a safety-related defect in certain 2017-2018 Pacifica Plug-In Hybrid Electric vehicles.
Note: These Pacifica vehicles contain hybrid battery packs produced by LG. FCA has not yet determined whether the battery packs were defective or the root cause of the fires.


Recall No. 22V-162
Date: March 2022

Volkswagen notified NHTSA of a safety-related defect in certain 2021 ID4 vehicles.
Note: The high voltage batteries used in the vehicles may contain insufficient soldering points and thus contain unreliable connections inside the high voltage battery. As a result of the unreliable connections, the vehicles may break down or stall while driving, leading to a crash.

 Automotive Defect Investigation

The NHTSA Office of Defects Investigation (NHTSA) has opened two separate investigations related to unexpected breaking in certain Honda and Tesla vehicles. These vehicles are equipped with collision mitigation braking systems (CMBS) or advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), which visually and audibly alert the drivers of a potential collision. Under certain circumstances, the system will automatically apply the brakes to help reduce the force of an unavoidable collision.

The problem of unexpected braking has been called “Phantom Braking”. Phantom braking is when a vehicle’s brakes activate unexpectedly even when traffic is flowing normally or there is no obstacle to avoid.

Inadvertent Automatic Emergency Braking
2017-2019 Honda CR-V and 2018-2019 Honda Accord
NHTSA Investigation Number: PE22003

The NHTSA has received a total of 278 complaints and several Early Warning Reports alleging unexpected activation of the collision mitigation braking system (CMBS) in some 2017-2019 Honda CR-V and 2018-2019 Honda Accord vehicles. Driver complaints include high-speed braking incidents occurring with nothing obstructing the vehicle’s path of travel. Of the 278 complaints, 6 allege a collision with minor injuries.

Inadvertent or unexpected braking activation while driving can cause unexpected speed reductions that can lead to increased vulnerability to rear-end impact collisions. The complaints allege that the inadvertent braking events occur without warning and randomly.

Unexpected Brake Activation
2021-2022 Tesla Model 3 and 2021-2022 Tesla Model Y
NHTSA Investigation Number: PE22002

The NHTSA has also received 354 complaints alleging unexpected brake activation in 2021-2022 Tesla Model 3 and 2021-2022 Tesla Model Y vehicles.

Driver reports have been characterized as “phantom braking”. Tesla describes the subject vehicles as equipped with a suite of advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) features referred to as Autopilot which Tesla states will allow the vehicle to brake and steer automatically within its lanes.

The complaints allege that while utilizing the ADAS features including adaptive cruise control, the vehicle unexpectedly applies its brakes while driving at highway speeds. Complainants report that the rapid deceleration can occur without warning, at random, and often repeated in a single drive cycle.

These investigations are a Preliminary Evaluation (PE) to determine the scope and severity of the potential problem and to fully assess the potential of these safety-related issues. If a defect is found, the NHTSA will issue a recall.

In December 2020, Toyota began an investigation into certain 2021 Toyota C-HR crossover SUVs after receiving field reports from the Japanese market alleging that when using the Traffic Movement Notification feature (a Japanese market feature not available in the U.S.), the vehicle radar sensor did not detect a vehicle driving in front of it. An inoperative radar sensor also meant that other features, such as Pre-Collision System (PCS), Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC), and Lane Tracing Assist (LTA) could be affected. In these cases, dealer technicians observed that the beam axis for the radar sensor was out of specification and adjusted it during the inspection. After completing the adjustment and initializing the radar sensor, the vehicles were able to detect the preceding vehicle.

According to the defect report, certain 2021 Toyota C-HR vehicles are equipped with a millimeter-wave sensor (radar sensor) and a camera to detect objects in front of it. These sensors also support certain driver assistance features, including the Pre-Collision System (PCS).

Under certain circumstances, the initialization of the radar sensor may not have been completed correctly, resulting in the PCS not being able to detect an object in front of it. As a result, the vehicle will not provide warnings or braking assist, and would not display a message or indicator to the driver that PCS is not functional. An inoperative PCS, without a PCS malfunction indicator to the driver, may increase the risk of a crash in certain driving situations.

As of January 2022, Toyota has not received any U.S. field reports or warranty claims related to this condition. Based on their investigation results, however, Toyota decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall campaign. Owners of the subject vehicles will be asked to take their vehicles to their Toyota dealer to have the radar sensor inspected and properly initialize if necessary. Toyota’s number for this recall is 22TA02 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-107.

The NHTSA Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) have opened up an investigation into certain 2019-2020 RAM trucks after receiving 22 complaints and 2 field reports alleging incidents of stalling and loss of engine power. The vehicles affected are equipped with 6.7L Cummins turbo diesel engines. According to the investigation report, the complaints found that most stall/loss of motive power incident allegations occurred at speeds above 25 MPH and resulted in permanent disablement of the vehicle.

The Vehicles Affected Include:
2019-2020 Ram 2500
2019-2020 Ram 3500
2019-2020 Ram 4500
2019-2020 Ram 5500

In November 2019, FCA issued Warranty Bulletin D-19-02 to announce to its dealers a Fast Feedback Program wherein they were notified of a campaign to collect, monitor, and correct quality issues on certain 2018-2020 Ram trucks equipped with the 6.7L Cummins engine. As a result of this campaign, high-pressure fuel pumps have been collected and inspected by the manufacturer and pump manufacturer.

ODI is opening this investigation to further assess the scope, frequency, root cause, and potential safety-related consequences of the alleged defect leading to stall/loss of motive power on 2019-2020MY RAM heavy-duty trucks.

In September 2019, the NHTSA was asked to initiate an investigation into certain Tesla Model S and Model X vehicles that received a revised battery management software update in one or more over-the-air updates from Tesla, beginning in May 2019. The petitioner based his request on vehicle fires that took place worldwide and over the air software updates Tesla made to the Battery Management System (BMS) of certain Tesla vehicles that resulted in loss of available vehicle mileage range and increased charging duration’s.

The five non-crash fires referenced in the petition include two fires that occurred in China in early 2019 involving vehicles that:

  • Had recently completed Supercharging sessions.
  • Were at a high state-of-charge (SOC) of the HV battery.
  • Were parked with the battery cooling system shutoff.
  • Had histories of high-stress usage for the HV batteries.

The three fires that occurred outside China did not involve the same patterns regarding vehicle state and charging history. The two fires that occurred in the United States include one involving a vehicle with no Supercharging history that was driving when the fire occurred and another in which the origin of the fire was external to the HV battery. The fifth fire, which also originated external to the HV battery, involved a vehicle in Germany that had been parked at a low SOC for an extended period. To date, incidents of fires involving parked vehicles with recent Supercharging and histories of high-stress use have only been observed in China, where high-stress use factors appear to be more common.

Given the absence of any incidents in the United States related to fast charging, and the absence of any such incidents globally since May 2019, the petition has been denied. The denial of this petition does not stop the Agency from taking further action if future findings find that a safety defect exists based on additional information received. NHTSA could initiate a recall if they find a defect in the design, construction, or performance of a motor vehicle that presents an unreasonable risk to safety.

The NHTSA Office of Defects Investigation have opened an investigation to whether a safety defect related to propellant degradation exists in non-recalled desiccated PSAN frontal air bag inflators manufactured by Takata. This investigation will include information on the Takata production processes, a study of inflators in the field, lists of recall actions that may have used desiccated PSAN inflators as remedy parts, as well as the makes and models originally manufactured with them.

From 2000 through 2017, Takata produced air bag inflators using two types of phase-stabilized ammonium nitrate (PSAN) propellant – propellant 2004 and propellant 2004L. After prolonged exposure to high temperature cycles and humidity, inflators using propellant 2004 can degrade, causing the propellant to burn too quickly when ignited. The rapid burning can cause the inflator to rupture during deployment, potentially causing serious or even fatal injury to vehicle occupants.

“Takata have been studying the long-term behavior of Takata desiccated PSAN inflators using propellant 2004L (as well as 2004) in the presence of moisture and temperature cycling. The research efforts are ongoing and to date, none have identified field evidence showing that propellant 2004L is undergoing a degradation process that leads to aggressive deployment and potential rupture. However, the time in service of such inflators remains short compared to that of the inflators using propellant 2004. Further study is needed to assess the long-term safety of desiccated inflators using propellant 2004L. “

NHTSA Action Number: EA21002

Click Here to see the complete list of vehicles involved in this investigation.