GM delays sales on 60,000 vehicles for OnStar glitch

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OnStar Command Center

A software glitch is preening the OnStar system from contacting the service's call center in some emergencies. Image: cletch/Flickr/CC BY

General Motors has delayed the delivery or sales of around 60,000 vehicles already on dealer’s lots due to a glitch in the OnStar crash notification system. The proactive move may have saved it a more expensive recall campaign, if left unattended until the future.

OnStar glitch won’t report some crashes

General Motors says that, unless the airbag is deployed, the glitch will prevent the notification system from contacting OnStar personnel in case of a crash. That mans that rear-impact collisions of great severity could go unreported.

General Motors was quick to point out that the glitch does not prevent the airbags from deploying, nor does it stop the crash notification system from functioning in accidents in which the airbags do deploy.

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Except for that…

Aside from this important glitch, however, the OnStar system will act normally to run smartphone apps and various other functions, including an emergency button to immediately contact the OnStar call center.

According to Automotive News, General Motors has repaired the glitch remotely through a software flash sent through the OnStar system. However, the remaining models will need to be upgraded manually at a dealership in order to affect the fix.

Affected vehicles

The vehicles affected in the move are some 2013 Chevrolet Cruze, Equinox, and Volts, as well as the Buick Verano. Also from 2013 are some Cadillac XTS and ATs, as well as the GMC Terrain. Some 2012 Cadillac SRX crossovers are also affected by the problem.

Some of the affected vehicles have already been sold, and some have not. The automaker says that owners of affected vehicles were contacted in August. GM says it is acting promptly, so no owner will have to wait until nearly after they pay off their car loan before delivery. The problem is expected to be resolved by the end of September, according to general Motors.

All of North America

Meanwhile, in related news, General Motors reported last week that it will begin selling Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC vehicles with the OnStar system in Mexico starting in 2013.

Mary Chan, president of GM’s Global Connected Consumer, said in the automaker’s press release:

“OnStar’s expansion into Mexico will make OnStar the preeminent provider of automobile safety and security services in Latin America. This is an important step as we will continue to grow GM’s connected vehicle solutions in other regions of the world in the coming months and years.”

With the expansion, OnStar will be available over the entire North American continent.


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