Silly, but Serious Safety Recalls from Mercedes and Kia

Recalls continue to bedevil automakers as airbag and software issues at Mercedes-Benz and a bad brake vacuum hose at Kia show. These are the result of quality control and development issues in what are admittedly complex automobiles.

Mercedes-Benz USA is recalling 2017 E300 and E300 4Matic vehicles. The front passenger air bag may not deploy properly if a front seat passenger is sitting on the edge of the seat or is laying in the seat with the seat reclined. These vehicles therefore fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 208, “Occupant Crash Protection.”

Mercedes-Benz is also recalling numerous 2009-2017 vehicles because a software update on control units used the wrong software, potentially affecting the correct deployment of the air bags in the event of a crash.

The Kia safety defect recall concerns a defective brake vacuum assist hose from Korean supplier Hwasung R&A. The vacuum hose, which connects to the power brake booster may have been incompletely formed. This could cause decreased elasticity of the rubber, which may make it vulnerable to kinking while normal vacuum is applied to it, degrading its performance. If this condition occurs, the brake pedal may feel harder when depressed, resulting in increased braking distance.

About Ken Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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