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GM Software ‘Fix’ Creates Brake Malfunction Issues, Prompts Updated Recall

February 10, 2020

UNITED STATES – A GM software “fix” carried out during a recall created new brake malfunction issues and prompted another updated vehicle recall, according to an online article on FREEP.COM. GM customers who had their vehicles repaired due to a software error started reporting brake failure when their vehicles were returned to them.*

The trouble began in December 2019, when auto manufacturer GM announced a recall involving close to 550,000 vehicles, including the 2019 Cadillac CT6, the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500, and the 2019 GMC Sierra 1500. These vehicles were recalled because of a software issue that could affect the electronic stability control and antilock brake system. These systems could be disabled due to a software error, GM said, which could pose a crash risk to drivers. 

A spokesperson for GM told the Detroit Free Press that about 162,000 of the 550,000 vehicle owners responded to the recall and took their vehicles into dealerships for repairs. A software update was performed on each of these vehicles that was supposed to fix the issues. Shortly after, the auto manufacturer started receiving reports of a new issue: electronic brake failure. 

It appears that the software update performed in response to the first recall caused a disruption to the electronic brake control module, or brake failure. The problem seems to be triggered by use of the OnStar app to start the vehicle. Several drivers reported that after using the app for remote start, their brakes failed at some point during the drive. 

GM says it has notified the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) about the problem and is sending another round of letters to the 550,000 owners. Owners will take their vehicles to local dealerships for a different software update that fixes both the initial problem and the new problem. 

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Category: Product Liability

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