GM recalls nearly 5,000 Sonics to check brake pads

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2012 Sonic

The 2012 Chevrolet Sonic. Image: DrivingtheNortheast/Flickr/CC BY

General Motors Co. has announced that it will be recalling 4,873 of its 2012 Chevrolet Sonic cars in the U.S. and Canada. The cars may be missing front brake pads, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s announcement on Friday.

A preventative measure

The company is being proactive in the recall. No injuries or accidents have been reported as a result of the issue. According to GM, its research concluded that 20 to 30 of the recalled cars were distributed without one of its inner or outer front brake pads. The missing pads could increase stopping distance and lead to an accident, GM said in a statement.

The company said that 4,296 of the cars are in the U.S. The remaining 577 are in Canada.

Problem detected during warranty service

The brake pad issue was first detected during a warranty service on a Sonic used as a rental car. The pads were part of components supplied by a South Korean-based subsidiary of Delphi Automotive. According to GM spokesman Alan Adler, the pads fell off the components before the cars were assembled and remained undetected at the bottom of shipping crates.

Owners notified mid-January

Sonic owners will be notified by dealer letters beginning Jan. 14. Technicians at GM dealerships will inspect the vehicles and replace the brake pads, calipers and rotors as needed at no charge to the customer.

A new GM model

The Sonic is a new member of the GM lineup. The sub-compact was a replacement for the Korean-built Chevy Aveo. Nearly half of its 10,000 U.S. sales happened in November. The Sonic is the only subcompact car built in the United States.

Two-tier pay system

The car is assembled at GM’s plant in Orion Township, Mich. The United Auto Workers agreed to allow GM to pay its workers according to the new two-tier pay scale. That second tier amounts to less than half the industry standard wages for new hires. The UAW agreed to the pay cut in order to keep the plant within the United States.



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