A Tuesday meeting of the senate, automobile manufacturers, and auto dealers resulted in a negotiation stalemate with the proposed new rental recall legislation that would prohibit automobile rental companies from renting or selling vehicles that have recalls on them. (more…)
Archive for the ‘Video’ Category
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), approximately 10,000 people die in drinking and driving related crashes every year. In an attempt to reach a goal of zero alcohol and impaired related deaths, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are recommending that states implement laws that will work toward that goal. (more…)
Automobile airbag and restraint company Takata Corp. of Tokyo have announced an airbag recall that will affect approximately 3.4 million Toyota, Lexus, Pontiac , Honda, Nissan, Infiniti and Mazda cars, trucks, and SUVs. (more…)
Honda is recalling certain Honda and Acura vehicles because the vehicle stability assist (VSA) system may not operate as designed. During manufacturing of the VSA electronic control unit (ECU), one of the electrical capacitors on the circuit board may have been damaged. (more…)
Over the years automobile manufacturers have been put to the test to design vehicles that will meet rising Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards and consumer demand brought on by high fuel prices. In their quest they have turned to develop and test low roll resistance tires. While these tires are used most frequently on hybrid cars, low rolling resistance tires are now starting to show up on more mainstream vehicles as well. (more…)
California residents may be surprised to learn that police and private companies are scanning automobile license plates and building huge databases of information about you, where you are going, and the places you stop.
Wireless company Evatran will soon be offering Chevrolet Volt and Nissan Leaf owners an option to have wireless charging installed in their vehicles. The company is expected to announce a partnership with SPX Service Solutions, early next year, making them the official charging supplier for the Chevrolet Volt.
The Center for Auto Safety is urging Honda to issue a recall on certain 1999-2002 Honda Accords after an exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation exposed a potential safety issue. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) there have been 11 complaints since 2009 of sub frame rust that have left owners with vehicles that are unsafe to drive. The complaints allege that water from the air conditioning drain hose dips down onto the passenger side sub frame rusting it so badly that the frame can separate from the vehicle. The above video shows that while the passenger side disintegrated from rust, the driver side is often rust free.
A spokesperson for Honda confirmed that the company has also received similar complaints, but said they do not believe the defect warrants a safety bulletin or recall. In 2003 Honda changed the location of the drain hose, but said that the design change is unrelated to the problem. If the investigation should lead to a recall, approximately 1.5 million vehicles could be affected.
Almost eight years after Cally Houck lost her two daughters in a car accident involving a rental vehicle with a recall on it, the five biggest car rental companies in the nation have agreed to support legislation that makes it illegal to rent or sell recalled vehicles. The historic agreement represents 93% of the rental car industry: Enterprise, Hertz, Avis, Dollar Thrifty and National. Law makers announced the agreement on Thursday saying that they expect the Senate will pass the bill later this year.
- The bill requires companies to stop renting vehicles within 24 hours of receiving a safety recall notice or within 48 hours if the recall involved more than 5,000 vehicles in a company’s fleet. The vehicles will not be rented or sold until the safety defects are repaired.
- The companies agreed to back the legislation after some revisions, including allowing the rental of a car if there was a manufacturer approved temporary step that eliminated the safety risk until parts were available.
- Companies also would be allowed to sell a damaged recalled vehicle as junk.
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will have authority to investigate and police rental car companies’ recall safety practices.
While the senators praised Houck’s advocacy along with automotive safety groups that pushed the issue, she thanked the lawmakers and industry “in memory of my treasured daughters.”
Consumers who are thinking of purchasing an electric car are usually deterred by the range of the lithium-ion battery used as the power source. Concerns about range, life expectancy, and the ability to find a charging station usually results in the consumer purchasing the vehicle with the technology they are familiar with, the combustion engine. Researchers are hoping to change consumers attitude toward electric vehicles with a new electrochemical cell called the lithium-air battery.
Lithium-air batteries are attractive to researchers because they rely on air as the cathode and lithium metal as the anode. This allows the battery to be lighter and can offer up to ten times more energy per density mass unit than conventional lithium-ion batteries. The first lithium-air battery was developed in the mid 1990’s but the technology still requires improvements before we can expect to see it used commercially.
- The battery requires a steady flow of oxygen to operate, so an air compressor and blower will need to be added to the system. This not only negates the weight reduced on the battery, but adds extra parts to the system.
- Lithium metal is highly flammable when exposed to water, so water vapor must be removed from the air and a water tight encasing is required.
Despite recent significant improvements in the technology, researchers say we are still 15 to 20 years from seeing it offered to the public. Once the battery has been approved a long term array of testing is required to make sure the battery can be used safely.