More recalls: GM this week said dealers would replace the driver’s side air bag inflator in 29,019 2013-2014 model year Chevrolet Cruze sedans in the US and 4,066 in Canada becuase it may rupture and/or the air bag may not inflate
General Motors started this week by continuing to honour CEO Mary Barra's oft-repeated promise - which is essentially to make good any car not good - so back to US dealers will go another 400,000 or so locally (and even Australian)-made cars for fixes various.
Same day, we reported that lawyer Kenneth Feinberg had announced GM's plan to compensate families of the at least 13 people who died in cars affected by the 'inadvertent rotation' ignition switch issue, which is the most serious of the multitude of GM recalls being undertaken right now. Barra said the fund was intended to compensate "every single person who suffered serious physical injury or lost a loved one" as a result of the bad switch. She also said Feinberg, who devised compensation funds for victims of high-profile disasters including the '9/11' attacks in 2001, would determine who was paid and how much, and there would be no cap on the payout.
Click the calendar forward just one day and cue another hammer blow for GM: another six recalls - mostly ignition switch-related - totalling 8.45m 1997 to 2014 vehicles, of which 7.6m are in the United States. And, this time, an update on the bottom line hit: the automaker said it would book a US$1.2bn charge in the second quarter for the recalls, including the $700m red-pen entry announced earlier.
And then, just today, around 21,000 more cars, GM Korea-built this time, recalled there for transmission mount checks. You wonder what goes through Barra's mind every time this sort of news reaches her desk in RenCen. I'd argue this recall saga means she's inherited the most poisonous chalice of any auto CEO I can recall in some 40 years following this intriguing industry.
If there was any consolation to be drawn, we also learned this week that Fiat-Chrysler is also involved in an ignition switch-related recall - and has, like GM, had to expand an earlier campaign, in this case, from 160,000 vehicles to about 900,000.
So, any good news this week? Yup. Let's start with Mexico: $1bn's worth of new BMW plant, a new Kia plant, a deal to ship Thai Mitsubishi sedans to Mexico and more Lexus assembly at a Toyota plant in Japan.
Speaking of Thailand, Nissan opened its new Navara plant this week and confirmed the QX30 line for Sunderland here in England.
Oh, and a certain Mr M Fields will be on $1.75m a year. He'll earn every cent, I reckon. Let's hope his early days at the top of Ford are a little less dramatic than Barra's at GM.
Have a nice weekend.
Graeme Roberts, Deputy Editor, just-auto.com