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.

Some 2021 Ford F-150 trucks could unexpectedly shift into neutral while driving. The unexpected loss of engine power could increase the chance of an accident.

In February 2022, an issue was brought to Ford’s Critical Concern Review Group (CCRG) about certain 2021 F-150 vehicles equipped with 3.5L GTDI, 2.7L, and 5.0L engines, along with the 10R80 transmission. These trucks were experiencing an increase in Transmission Fluid Pressure along with a Transmission Fluid Pressure Low Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) of P0868. This DTC would falsely activate and cause the transmission to shift into a neutral state while the truck was driven. Once the false activation occurs, the vehicle will coast to a stop and the electronic shifter will attempt to engage Park. Once the vehicle comes to a complete stop, the electronic shifter will automatically shift into Park.

According to the engineering investigation, one of the power-train diagnostic logic software branches was turned on in error when these vehicles were produced. Under certain conditions, this diagnostic logic could inadvertently activate the pump gear failure detection logic even though the hardware is still functioning properly. When this happens, the transmission on-board diagnostics will set the DTC P0868, turn on a Wrench Light telltale, and the vehicle’s transmission will shift into a neutral state. As the vehicle slows to a speed below 2 mph/3kph, the electronic shifter will attempt to engage the Park function and will automatically shift into Park when the vehicle comes to a complete stop. The transmission function can be restored by a key-off/key-on cycle.

Between October 2021 and February 2022 there have been 28 warranty claims and one Customer Contact Center report to Ford that potentially related to this concern.

Dealers will correct the problem by updating the Power-train Control Module (PCM) software. Ford’s number for this recall is 22S15 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-188.

Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VW) will be asking a small number of 2021 VW ID.4 electric crossover SUV owners, to return to their dealerships because of a problem affecting the solder connections inside the HV battery of their vehicles. This defect could result in a stall and may increase the risk of an accident. A fix for this problem is still under development by the manufacturer.

VW became aware of the defect in January 2021 when the first known field case occurred outside the U.S. VW quality and safety departments began to monitor the field reports for the nature and frequency of the non-starting condition and found reports of similar problems in other brand vehicles using the same or similar battery systems. During a multi-brand clearing committee meeting, impacted brands shared information on the potential stall while driving cases and decided to conduct a recall. Volkswagen will be conducting a recall on 351, 2021 VW ID.4 vehicles in the U.S. that contain the potentially affected parts.

According to the defect report, a manufacturing problem with the high voltage (HV) battery may have caused incorrect soldering on specific points of the flexible printed circuit assembly (FPCA). The amount of solder contact points of the FPCA is not sufficient and the thickness of the solder layer is out of tolerance parameters. The result is an unreliable connection inside the HV battery that could lead to a breakdown or stalling while driving. If this issue is present in the vehicle, the driver will be alerted by a high voltage system warning message in the instrument panel.

Owner notification letters about the defect are expected to be mailed by May 13, 2022. Volkswagen’s number for this recall is 9302 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-1562.

Are you experiencing repeated problems with your hybrid or electric vehicle? Do you think it could be a lemon? If you have any questions about your rights and the California Lemon Law, please call our office at 888-395-3666 and get some great Lemon Law advice!

Certain 2013-2014 model year Chevrolet Express and 2013-2014 model year GMC Savana HD vehicles equipped with 6.6L Duramax diesel engines (RPO LGH) could experience a malfunction indicator light (MIL) illumination because of a problem affecting the Exhaust Gas Re-circulation (EGR) cooler.

clogged EGR

EGR coolers can fail for a few different reasons. Coolant passageways become clogged and prevent exhaust gas from cooling, some EGR coolers may be susceptible to corrosion, and repeated cycling of extreme temperatures (thermal stress) can all cause your EGR to fail.

There are a few indications that your EGR is failing: the engine idles rough and stalls; there is an increase in fuel consumption and a decrease in performance; the engine management light is always on, and there is a smell of fuel in and around the vehicle.

General Motors is providing owners of certain 2013-2014 Chevrolet Express and 2013-2014 GMC Savana HD vehicles equipped with 6.6L Duramax diesel engines vehicles, with additional warranty protection. This special coverage covers the problem described above for a period of 10 years or 120,000 miles (193,000 km), whichever occurs first. The warranty covers the vehicles from the date the vehicle was originally placed in service, regardless of ownership.

** GM should notify customers if this special warranty coverage is on their vehicle.**

Repairs and adjustments qualifying under this special coverage must be performed by a General Motors dealer.

View the complete warranty document here: MC-10150564-9999.pdf

General Motors (GM) will be providing owners of certain 2016-2017 Chevrolet, Cadillac and GMC trucks additional warranty coverage because of a problem that could affect the fuel injectors in their engines. The trucks receiving additional warranty are equipped with 5.3L or 6.2L engines.

Vehicles manufactured with these defective fuel injectors include:
2016-2017 Cadillac Escalade
2016-2017 Cadillac Escalade ESV
2016-2017 Chevrolet Silverado
2016-2017 Chevrolet Suburban
2016-2017 Chevrolet Tahoe
2016-2017 GMC Sierra
2016-2017 GMC Yukon
2016-2017 GMC Yukon XL

** GM will notify customers if this special warranty coverage is on their vehicle.**

The special coverage will extend the warranty of the above vehicles, for a period of 10 years or 150,000 miles (240,000km), whichever occurs first, from the date the vehicle was originally purchased, regardless of ownership. This special coverage only applies to vehicles in these states: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington.

According to documents released by GM, “Under certain circumstances, one or more of the vehicle’s fuel injectors may deliver an improper amount of fuel to the engine. If this happens, the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (the Check Engine Light) will illuminate to warn the driver there is a problem. The engine will begin to run rough and will eventually stall. Diagnostic trouble codes, including P0300-P0308 or DTC P050D, will be set.

Other symptoms of a bad or dirty fuel injector include: The vehicle is hard to start and idles rough; Poor performance and increased fuel consumption; and an engine knock or detonation that could lead to complete engine failure.

Ford Motor Company (Ford) will be contacting the owners of certain 2018 F-150 vehicles with manual and power release tailgates because the tailgate latches on their trucks could unlatch unexpectedly while driving.

In September 2021, a problem affecting tailgate latches on certain 2018 Model Year F-150 trucks, was brought to the attention of Ford’s Critical Concern Review Group. The affected vehicles were built with a tailgate latch that could unlatch under certain loading conditions and cause unintended opening of the tailgate while the vehicle is in motion.

According to the defect report, the suspect tailgate latch design incorporates a latch pawl that is perpendicular to the catch mechanism. This latch design is susceptible to pawl walkout (unlatching) under certain dynamic loading conditions in this tailgate application. Unintended tailgate opening without vehicle operator knowledge may result in loss of unrestrained cargo increasing the risk of a crash. An unintended tailgate opening will only be apparent to an operator if they notice it prior to entering the vehicle.

Owners will be notified by mail and instructed to take their vehicle to a Ford or Lincoln dealer to have both the left-hand and right-hand tailgate latches replaced. The recalled tailgate latches (JL3A-9943150-AC and JL3A-9943150-BC) will be replaced with tailgate latches that incorporate a different latch pawl design (5L3Z-9943150-A).

In April 2018, Dearborn Truck Plant reverted to the initial latch design. Vehicles not included in this recall were built with latches that incorporate a different latch pawl design. Ford’s number for this recall is 21S53 and the NHTSA campaign number is 21V-983.

 Automotive Defect Investigation

In 2017, the NHTSA Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) opened two Recall Queries (RQ) affecting certain Hyundai and Kia vehicles equipped with “Theta II” engines. The investigation looked at both the timeliness and scope of the recalls as well as the compliance of each company to meet their reporting requirements under the Motor Vehicle Safety Act. Numerous violations of the requirements were found for both companies, and in November 2020, both companies entered into Consent Orders with NHTSA to resolve NHTSA’s assertions of violations of law.

In 2018, the Center for Automotive Safety (CAS) petitioned the Agency to investigate non-crash fires on various Hyundai and Kia models, alleging vehicle fires at varying points of origin and occurring under various non-crash related circumstances (including key-off fires). The ODI found that many of the fire incidents appeared to start in the engine compartment area and made reference to the two open RQ investigations as likely pertinent. After reviewing responses two Preliminary Evaluations were started to investigate incidents of non-crash fires (regardless of origin or operational status of the vehicle) on various model-year Hyundai (Sonata and Santa Fe) and Kia (Optima, Sorento, and Soul) models.

To date, Hyundai and Kia have issued several recalls addressing vehicle fires, including those due to engine failure involving various engine types (Theta II GDI, Theta II MPI, Theta II MPI HEV, Nu GDI, and Gamma GDI). The repair for the engine failure recalls typically involves engine inspection (to detect existing damage), and if necessary, engine replacement. Additionally, both manufacturers are installing an engine control software modification known as Knock Sensor Detection Software (KSDS) which is intended to detect impending engine failure, alert the driver, and limit engine power (to lessen the likelihood of engine failure). KSDS is being installed under recalls and non-safety field actions, and both companies have extended limited engine warranties. They have even replaced engines if the KSDS software detects an impending engine failure.

The Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) is opening this Engineering Analysis for two primary purposes. First, the investigation will continue to evaluate the scope of recalls initially begun under prior ODI actions, and will also include other recalls for fires due to engine failure. Second, the investigation will monitor and evaluate the efficacy of the recall remedies for engine fire-related recalls, as well as the long-term viability of related programs and non-safety field actions being conducted by Hyundai and Kia.

The Vehicles Affected Include:
2013 Hyundai Elantra
2012 Hyundai Santa FE
2013-2014 Hyundai Santa FE Sport
2011-2014 Hyundai Sonata
2011-2013, 2016-2017 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
2017 Hyundai Tucson
2015-2016 Hyundai Veloster
2012-2015 Kia Forte
2012-2015 Kia Forte Koup
2011-2014 Kia Optima
2011-2013, 2017-2018 Kia Optima Hybrid
2017-2018 Kia Optima PHEV
2012-2015 Kia RIO
2011-2014 Kia Sorento
2012-2016 Kia Soul
2011-2013 Kia Sportage

Nissan North America, Inc. (Nissan) will be asking the owners of certain 2021 Nissan Rogue SUVs to return to their dealerships to fix a problem affecting the fuel system in their vehicles. An assembly defect in the fuel pump could lead to an unexpected vehicle stall.

The problem began in March 2021, when Nissan first received a field report about a 2021 Rogue SUV crossover that allegedly experienced a fuel pump failure. According to the driver of the vehicle, the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) illuminated just before the engine stalled. The driver was not able to restart the vehicle and needed to have it towed. Nissan initiated an investigation into the problem and collected parts from the field to perform duplication testing to identify the scope of the issue. The supplier also conducted a field investigation and process check in an attempt to track down the problem.

Nissan discussed the ongoing investigation with the NHTSA and reviewed their field claims checks for the U.S. Market and identified 87 warranty claims alleging the same problem… engine stalls while driving. Based on manufacturer production records the problem affects certain model year 2021 Nissan Rogue vehicles manufactured between March 2021 and October 2021. No other Nissan or Infiniti vehicles have been affected.

According to the defect report, the problem is the result of an operator assembly error at the supplier. Some fuel pumps may experience excessive friction between the fuel pump brush and commutator. This will cause heat and melting damage that would result in the fuel pump failing. If the fuel pump fails, it will cause the engine to stall and not restart.

Owners receiving notices will be asked to return to their dealers to have the fuel pump assembly replaced. Nissan’s number for this recall is R21B8 and the NHTSA campaign number is 21V-957.