Hyundai Finally Addresses Its Transmission Problem in Tucson SUVs
You may remember the first article I ever wrote for Torquenews.com that detailed the horrifying story of a man who pulled out from a parking lot in a strip mall and found his engine could rev, but the car didn’t move, leaving him at the mercy of drivers who might or might not be empathetic to the plight of a driver betrayed by his ride. I said in the article that this issue had to be addressed quickly. Well, we have our answer now.
New News that is Really News. Read the following quoted directly from ABC News:
- “Hyundai is recalling about 41,000 small SUVs in the U.S. because a software glitch can stop the vehicles from accelerating.
- The recall came after pressure from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It covers 2016 Tucson models with seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmissions made from May 20, 2015 to May 31, 2016.
- Hyundai says it started getting reports in June that the engines would rev but the SUVs wouldn't move after coming to a stop. The problem was intermittent and often didn't repeat itself, the company said in government documents.
- Engineers traced the problem to the transmission control computer that monitors driving to refine gear shifting. If the gas pedal is repeatedly cycled, the Tucson's may not accelerate, increasing the risk of a crash.
- Hyundai at first sent a service bulletin to dealers but decided to do a recall after meeting with the safety agency on Aug. 10.
- The recall began Sept. 7. Dealers will reprogram the transmission computer.”
Wherefore Art Thou Hyundai Quality?
Naturally, this happens right after I dropped an article praising the rise of Hyundai from the ashes of its first car which had abysmal quality control and had a virtually uncontrolled downward spiral in sales as a result.
It looks to the outside observer that Hyundai may have gotten so proud of its record in increasing quality, rising to the point where its two brands, Kia and Hyundai, took the first and third places on J.D. Power’s ratings for initial quality, that it may just have taken its eye off the ball for a nanosecond or two.
Like they say “Pride goeth before a fall.” Was it pride, was it hubris? I don’t know, but I do know that this is disappointing. Really disappointing. Even more disappointing is that they had to be pushed by NHTSA to recall the cars to deal with this software issue.
I know that you may get sick and tired of hearing me talk about the new paradigm of car manufacture created by Tesla, but, when Tesla has a problem like this, and they have had problems with AutoPilot for example, they rewrite the code and send it out overnight to every Tesla so affected. I’ve got to emphasize this. Because they don’t have the capability to send the updates over the air, the only way to deal with the issue would be to have a massive recall and do it at the dealership. They need, and every other auto manufacturer needs, to come into the brave new world and speed up the reaction time when faced with a grave problem. Do it. Enable your new cars with the ability to update their software over the air.
Whither Goest Thou Hyundai?
So, Hyundai is faced with both a problem and a huge opportunity. Their quality control rise has been phenomenal. Now they have to change their corporate culture away from denial and rapid reaction. They need to get with the new program. (heh, heh, see what I did there? Software, program? Okay, not that funny, but I tried,)
Seriously folks. We shouldn’t have to wait weeks or months to correct bad software code. It’s 2016.