WASHINGTON - General Motors is recalling some of its newest pickup trucks because steering gear boxes may not be securely bolted to vehicle frames.
About 9,300 1999 Chevrolet Silverados and GMC Sierras, all with extended cabs and four-wheel drive, are subject to the recall, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said in its monthly list of vehicle safety campaigns.
Because bolts were tightened with less than specified torque, they may work loose and eventually fall out, and drivers could lose steering control, the company and agency said.
Company spokeswoman Mia Walton said GM does not believe there is any link between the defect and the labor difficulties the company experienced while trying to launch the important new trucks.
Several other 1999 cars and trucks are being recalled, NHTSA said. They include:
1999 OLDSMOBILE INTRIGUE WITH 3.8-LITER V-6
Problem: A missing clip allows heater hose to touch an oxygen sensor, leading to coolant leak and a possible engine compartment fire.
Fix: Install clip.
1999 LINCOLN CONTINENTAL
Problem: Fuel rail crossover hose leaks, creating a fire hazard.
Fix: Replace fuel rail assembly.
1999 FORD E-350 ECONOLINE
Problem: Incorrect speedometer gear understates actual speed, which encourages driving at illegal or unsafe speeds.
Fix: Replace speedometer gear.
1997 SUZUKI SWIFT WITH
Problem: Shift lever moves from 'park' without use of key, release button or brake pedal, and vehicle can roll away.
Fix: Replace shift assembly.
1992-94 PLYMOUTH COLT, 1992-96 EAGLE SUMMIT, BOTH WITH ALL-WHEEL DRIVE
Problem: The transfer case locks up from lack of lubrication and can cause loss of vehicle control.
Fix: Depending on severity of the problem, add transfer case oil or replace transfer case.
1994-95 FERRARI 348
Problem: Automatic seat belt slider jams.
Fix: Replace seat belt system.
1997-99 FERRARI 550 MARANELLO
Problem: Fuel supply and return lines leak, creating fire danger.
Fix: Replace lines.
NHTSA reported that two other recalls were weather related.
Mazda North American Oper-ations is recalling 73,000 1998 Mazda 626s because moisture can get into the sound system, cause speakers to short out and potentially lead to a fire, NHTSA said.
The agency said the problem occurs in hot, humid weather if a window is down and the air conditioner is running. Dealers are to install aluminum tape to keep condensation out of the audio system.
Hyundai Motor America is recalling about 65,000 1995-97 Accents registered in 20 cold-weather states. NHTSA said road salt corrodes the lower coils of the front springs, which can break and puncture tires.
Dealers are to install guides that would prevent broken springs from touching tires.