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Honda recalls a third of all Citys made in 2007

BS Reporter  |  Mumbai 

Power window switch can catch fire.

Honda Siel Cars India, the Indian subsidiary of Honda Motors of Japan, today said that it will recall more than 8,500 City sedans made in 2007 in the country to replace a defective switch. As the company sold 26,800 Citys during that year, almost every third of those cars will have to get the defective switch replaced.

The announcement came two days after Toyota Motor Corporation, the world’s largest car maker, announced one of history's biggest vehicle recalls — 2.5 million cars of top models like the Camry and Corolla Altis!

The City, the most popular car in the executive segment, is the flagship of Honda in the country. It sells in excess of 3,500 a month, and almost 75 per cent of the company’s sale volumes come from the City. Things could change only in 2011 when Honda plans to launch a small car in the market. The Citys recalled by Honda belong to the second generation of the car. Since September 2008, it has sold the third generation of the City, which is priced upwards of Rs 850,000.

* Maruti recalled 75,000 Omnis in 2001 to rectify a defective routing of the fuel hose
* Honda recalled 2,310 Accords in 2007 which were made in 2005-06
* Tata Motors recalled about 40 JLR machines in 2009

According to the company, the critical component used for operating the power windows could catch fire if exposed to water or any other liquid. However, no untoward incident has been reported so far in the country, the company claimed. Honda has come out with the full list of customers who possess the defective models.

“The replacement will be carried out free of cost and the company will communicate directly with the owners of the cars who are covered under this part-replacement plan,” said a press release from the company.

Meanwhile, at the global level, Honda has recalled almost 650,000 Fits (also known as Jazz) and Citys. These models too carry the same faulty power window switch. There were three reported cases of fire due to the defect, two in the United States and one in South Africa. However, the Jazz cars (the high-end hatchbacks) sold in India do not belong to the earlier lot and therefore do not require any recall.

“The global recall does not impact the Honda Jazz sold in India. The recall announced by Honda applies to the first generation Jazz and does not apply to the second generation Jazz, which has been sold in India since June 2009," the release said.

Meanwhile, Toyota, which is facing the heat from the massive recall spanning across the US, Europe and China, said that there is no need for any such recall in India. The defect is a result of a flaw in the component supplied to Toyota by one of its suppliers. However, suppliers for India are different.

The defective models are fitted with a faulty accelerator pedal which remains depressed even when pressure is eased. This leads to unwarranted speeding of the vehicle and can even cause accidents. Several deaths have been reported as a result. Toyota Kirloskar Motors, the Indian subsidiary of the Japanese giant, sells the Corolla Altis and the Camry in India also.

First Published: Sun, January 31 2010. 00:01 IST