Investigation into Honda SUV fires reopened - DodgeIntrepid.Net Forums - Dodge Intrepid, Concorde, 300m and Eagle Vision chat
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 09-14-2004, 05:52 PM Thread Starter
Intrepid Pro
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Catonsville, Md.
Posts: 3,652
Feedback: 0 / 0%
                     
Investigation into Honda SUV fires reopened

From the Detroit Insider:

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Investigation into Honda SUV fires reopened
By Greg Schneider / Washington Post

The federal government has reopened and expanded an investigation into Honda Motor Co.'s CR-V sport-utility vehicle, trying to determine why 2003 and 2004 models sometimes catch fire shortly after their initial oil change.
The problem has persisted more than two months after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration closed a preliminary investigation into the fires and related oil leaks in July. At that time the agency agreed with Honda that the incidents were mostly likely caused by faulty work by service technicians.
The new inquiry puts the focus back on the manufacturer. Called an "engineering analysis," the probe is the most serious level of inquiry conducted by NHTSA's Office of Defects Investigation. Such investigations lead to vehicle recalls roughly 60 to 80 percent of the time, an agency spokeswoman said.

Honda has been working to notify its dealers and service technicians about ways to avoid the problem since mid-July, but continuing reports of new incidents draw "into question the effectiveness of the service communication," NHTSA said in the official notice of investigation.
The agency declined to comment further, saying it is against policy to talk about ongoing investigations.

A Honda spokesman said the company would cooperate with NHTSA and is continuing to conduct its own probe. "We continue to turn over every stone to ensure there isn't something else that's a contributing factor, in terms of the materials or workmanship," Honda spokesman Andy Boyd said. "To this point we've not been able to identify any defect or other factor, other than the issue at the dealer level."

The company said the problem seems to be caused by technicians, usually at dealerships, improperly changing the oil filter during a CR-V's initial oil change, usually at 5,000 miles or less. The rubber gasket from the factory-installed filter often sticks to the engine block, and when the new filter is installed over it, the new filter fails to seal well, and oil leaks out. The oil sprays onto the CR-V's hot manifold and ignites.

Honda says it does not know why the old gasket is so likely to stick to the engine block or why the 2003 and 2004 model CR-Vs are more prone to this than other model years or other vehicles. Honda said the company has found no design changes from earlier model years that would explain why the fires have occurred in the more recent models.

NHTSA and Honda have identified 71 related incidents involving both model years, 44 of which resulted in fires. There have been no injuries reported, but a significant number of the fires consumed the whole vehicle. While the number of complaints is a small portion of the total estimated 280,000 such vehicles on the road, experts say the problem's severity and mysterious origins make it especially troubling.

Honda does not believe news of the fires has scared away potential CR-V buyers, Boyd said, but sales of the small SUV were down slightly in both July and August compared with the same months last year, according to Ward's AutoInfoBank.

Several Honda dealers say they dislike being blamed by the manufacturer, pointing out that an occasional lapse in an oil change doesn't lead to such potentially catastrophic results in other vehicles. Michael Shockley, general manager of Shockley Honda in Frederick, said his dealership has had two CR-V fires, one last year and one last month, involving different mechanics.
"The whole shop goes on red alert and -- BAM! -- it happens again," Shockley said. "When you burn two cars you must apologize to the owners of those cars; it's kind of a horrible thing to do, right? But in both cases the customers looked at me and said, 'Please don't fire that mechanic, I don't think it was his fault.' The customers felt it was the fault of Honda."

The problem, which has lit up online Honda chat groups, aims at the heart of Honda's reputation as one of the safest and most consumer-friendly of car companies, said Bob Kurilko, an auto marketing expert at Edmunds.com. "The publicity of a [possible] forced recall is not good, especially for Honda, because they have a pristine reputation and want to manage that and protect it," he said. "Honda acting quickly could jump in front of this thing and just initiate a voluntary recall, and I think they're going to want to do that before NHTSA forces them."

But Boyd, the Honda spokesman, said the company believes a recall would be counterproductive based on current understanding of the problem.
Recalling the vehicles to replace oil filters "wouldn't accomplish anything," he said. "You'd still have a certain percentage having an oil leak or fire. It's not that different than the issue running its course."
moparman is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the DodgeIntrepid.Net Forums - Dodge Intrepid, Concorde, 300m and Eagle Vision chat forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

Member names may only be composed of alpha-numeric characters. (A-Z and 0-9)

!!ATTENTION ADVERTISERS!! If you intend on advertising anything on this forum, whatsoever, you are required to first contact us here . Additionaly, we do NOT allow BUSINESS NAMES unless you are an Authorized Vendor. If you own a business, and want to do sales on this site via posting or private message, you will need to follow the rules. Shops, Stores, Distributors, Group Buys without being authorized will see your account terminated.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Linear Mode Linear Mode
Rate This Thread:



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Look what I found........Gran Turismo 4 car list!!! Avenger Whatever 35 03-22-2005 12:37 AM
This is DODGE INTREPID.net right? TREPtaculor General Discussion 52 07-30-2004 08:50 PM
Strange - Honda vehicle fires linked to oil changes moparman General Discussion, other Mopar Vehicles 1 07-11-2004 02:09 AM
Are they gonna build... Avenger General Discussion, other Mopar Vehicles 8 08-14-2002 03:41 PM
Get ready to laugh I have a pic of a riced up... Avenger General Discussion, other Mopar Vehicles 43 08-14-2002 01:39 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome