2014 a Record Year for U.S. Auto Recalls; More of the Same in 2015?

In 2014 alone, over 62 million vehicles were recalled across the United States.

In case you were wondering, that sets a new American record for auto recalls in a single calendar year.

NY Times Graphic-Auto Recalls 1

In fact, not only does it set a new record–it more than doubles the old record of 30.8 million recalls set back in 2004.

With so much attention focused on the automotive industry in general, and massive companies like General Motors (GM), Takata Corporation, Nissan, Jeep and Toyota in particular, some are predicting that 2015 will also be a record year for auto recalls.

Unfortunately for the American driver, it appears that we have a serious problem on our hands regarding the quality of the vehicles the auto industry is currently putting out onto American roads.

What’s worse is that some manufacturers have not only been cutting corners in making defective vehicles, but also actively taking steps to cover up serious, even life-threatening problems–like GM did with its ignition defect.

That particular cover up is still producing consequences in the form of accidents, injuries and deaths that continue to occur even after GM was forced to come clean.

All because GM chose to place the importance of profits over the health and safety of its customers.

The good news is that increased scrutiny on automobile manufacturers like GM, in combination with lawsuits filed by those who have been injured or by the families of those killed as a result of defective vehicles, should go a long way in forcing all automotive manufacturers to stand up and take responsibility for the products they are putting out onto the roads of America–even if for no other reason than fear of retribution.

As Baron Edward Thurlow was reported to have said, “Corporations have neither bodies to be punished, nor souls to be condemned; they therefore do as they like.”

The only way to truly get a corporation’s attention is to hit it in the pocketbook.

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