UPDATE 2-GM expands ignition switch recall to 2.6 million cars
(Adds global, U.S. numbers, quote from CEO)
By Paul Lienert
DETROIT, March 28 (Reuters) - General Motors Co is adding 971,000 cars to its global ignition switch recall, which began in February with 1.6 million vehicles and has been linked to at least a dozen deaths.
The recall, which now totals 2,591,665 cars, includes all model years of the Chevrolet Cobalt, Chevrolet HHR, Saturn Ion, Saturn Sky, Pontiac G5 and Pontiac Solstice made from 2003-2011.
Older versions of those cars, dating from 2003-2007, were recalled in February.
Even before the expansion, the recall had sparked investigations by Congress, federal regulators, the Department of Justice and GM itself. All are asking why it took GM so long to address an issue first noted by the company in 2001.
GM said the newer models made after 2007 were equipped with a redesigned ignition switch, but that some of those cars might have been repaired with older replacement parts that may be faulty. The expanded recall includes 824,000 cars in the United States and 971,000 globally, GM said.
GM also is recalling all the replacement ignition switches that have been sent to U.S. aftermarket distributors, the spare parts market. About 95,000 faulty switches were sold to dealers and parts wholesalers.
Reuters reported this week that it was still possible to purchase GM-brand ignition switches manufactured by Delphi Automotive carrying the same parts number as the product at the center of the February recall. Continued...