Thank goodness the first electric car recall is out of the way

by Ernie Hernandez on January 31, 2011

THINK City

And it had nothing to do with it being an electric vehicle

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued two recalls regarding the 2011 THINK City electric vehicle (EV). We are thankful that neither recall has anything to do with the drivetrain.

The first recall was issued on January 19, 2011. It affected 16 cars and the component involved was the seat belts.

The second recall was issued on January 21, 2011. It affected 23 cars and the component involved was the defroster.

While we would prefer to not see recalls generally, it would not have been favorable to the industry had the first EV recall been due to its status as an EV. The fact that EVs have the same quality issues as other manufacturer’s internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles do is to be expected. THINK is fortunate in one sense. Final assembly is occurring essentially by hand in Elkhart, Indiana with the result being very low production numbers. Thus the low number of vehicles impacted by the recalls will affect few vehicle owners.

A line that we learned many years ago about the automotive industry is that nobody builds the perfect car. There are multiple meanings to that line. While a Ferrari may be the perfect stylish, fast and unique vehicle for us, you may wish to have just a touch more room and better use of your gasoline. Your preference may be a practical and more affordable minivan to haul all of your people along with all of their stuff easily and comfortably. And yet another automotive enthusiast may prefer the near silent operation of an electric car, propelling owner and occupant in emission-free bliss to their destination. Ones perfect is anothers abomination. But another meaning is to take it literally – nobody builds the perfect car.

A quick look through the NHTSA database would find that every vehicle manufacturer that sells vehicles in the United States (some of which you are familiar with, most of which you probably are not) would show that recalls are a part of doing business. How the recalls are handled is as important as the reason for the recall in the first place.

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