Which? calls for reforms to the car recalls systemProblem cars revealed that Which? wants recalled

20 June 2013

Car safety recall

New research by Which? has revealed more evidence that the current car recalls system in the UK is severely flawed.

The body that administers recalls in the UK – the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) – is failing to compel carmakers to recall cars, even when there appear to be clear safety issues with some models.

Which? is now asking for consumers' help in challenging VOSA to raise its game.

Overhaul required

Which? believes that the UK’s car safety recall system needs to be overhauled, as currently VOSA essentially hands the decision about when recalls are necessary over to carmakers. While VOSA has the authority to force a carmaker to issue a safety recall, in practice it did not once do so in 2012. 

Volkswagen Passat handbrake EPB

Problem cars

Which? has uncovered several instances where it believes VOSA and the carmakers concerned should be taking action and issuing a recall – yet, to date, they haven’t. 

One example is the failure of the Volkswagen Passat (2005-2010) electronic parking brake, which can leave the car without a functioning handbrake. Which? is calling on VOSA to act and issue a recall.

Which? has also been told of more than 10 cases of problems with the Peugeot 307 CC's seatbelt pre-tensioner system, which can explode while driving. In one case, this was without any prior warning.

Which? asks drivers to report faults

Which? is asking car owners who have suffered a problem that they believe merits a manufacturer recall on safety grounds to report it to us. Examples include electrical issues, vehicle fires, or a fault with brakes, steering or airbags. Which? will follow up any common issues raised by this process with VOSA and the relevant carmakers. 

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