Feds Probe Steering Loss in Hyundai Santa Fe
The popular SUV has had its share of safety problems
Monday, October 15, 2012
he Hyundai Santa Fe has had a somewhat spotty safety record and now regulators say they're looking into a steering problem in the popular SUV.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says a fastener can come loose, causing the steering shaft to come part and drivers to lose control of the vehicle.
No accidents have been reported but NHTSA says it received a complaint from a driver about a complete loss of steering. Hyundai reports receiving a separate complaint about a similar problem, which it traced to a loose bolt.
The investigation covers about 70,000 Santa Fes from the 2011 model year and could lead to a recall.
In July, Hyundai recalled more than 200,000 Santa Fe and Sonata models to fix a problem with the airbags. Safety regulators said the front passenger airbags of the Santa Fe models appeared to have improper occupant classification system, putting small-bodied people at risk.
The airbag recall followed a class-action lawsuit filed in 2009 that alleged Hyundai's airbag sensors don't accurately distinguish between children and adults, increasing the chances that an airbag won't properly deploy in the event of an accident.
In 2008, NHTSA investigated reports of suspension failures in the Santa Fe, some at high rates of speed. Two consumers said their vehicle "nearly rolled over" following the suspension failure.