There are so many cars on the road today, more than ever before. The auto industry is making unique cars to show off their unique ideas. And, just about everyone has a car of some kind, some for collecting, others to get to that job that is paying for it.
Ford Rolls Over
The first mishap we would like to shed some light on here is the Ford Motor Company Ford Explorer rollovers. This started in the 80’s with the Bronco II but continued with the design of the Ford Explorer. This car was said to be too narrow, which would make it far more likely to tip over, however, if the car was 2 inches wider the issue would be resolved. But, Ford chose not to do anything about the issue. Instead, it looked at $1000’s if not millions in lawsuits. The simply refunded the claimed responsibility that could have saved lives.
Toyota’s Accelerator out of Control
Toyota wasn’t any better with their acceleration issue. They again did not want to take the blame, however, after 89 deaths due to the car accelerating on its own and crashing into things. The driver had no control over the acceleration or the brakes with the unexplained the unintended acceleration. To avoid prosecution they shelled out $1.2 Billion in recalls. This began in 2010 with more than 8 million cars affected. It was thought that they were well aware and were trying to hide the issue.
GM’s Shut Down Ignition Switch
GM had a little issue as well, not to worry, they all have their issues. The ignition switches used in their cars would rotate out and just stop for no apparent reason. This lead to a major pile-up of accidents that were not the driver’s fault. The issues started around 2005 but they chose to ignore the problem due to the number of ignitions on the road and the cost. After $900 million in fines, they decided to take the blame for the ignition switches and fix them, after filing bankruptcy.
Takata Shrapnel Filled Air Bags
The Takata Corporation based in Japan provided auto parts to the automakers. And, so this little mishap affected various cars across the board. It seems for whatever reason the car’s airbag contained a canister filled with ammonium nitrate to help them inflate. However, when the canister exploded to release the gas, it became flying shrapnel that was dangerous to drivers and passengers alike.
Exploding Firestone Tires
The Firestone Tires that were most commonly used on Ford Explorers. Not that Ford wasn’t already having an issue with their Explorers, just add one more. The tires were blowing out all over and causing serious, well, rollovers. The government was also seeing the issue with the car manufacturers being responsible for so many deaths and injuries that the NHTSA implemented a TRED act which held these manufacturers responsibly and even facing criminal charges for the death or injuries of people. If those deaths or injuries were related to the defect.
Tesla Suicide Run
A new issue that is on the rise is the self-driving Tesla, which is reported to not stop when the driver takes over. This has happened with emergency vehicles and other drivers on the road. The car will stop and then for whatever reason take off and can reach super high speeds rather quickly. Getting behind the wheel of a self propelled car is risky, but with this one, it could mean your life.
Ferrari isn’ exempt from the car malfunctions as it would seem. In 2010, this manufacturer discovered that there was an explosion issue. When the car was driven at high speeds for long distances it would catch on fire. Or, if it were to sit in the hot sun or a hot garage it had a tendency to explode. After some investigation, it was discovered that a particular glue used in the making of the Ferrari 458 was very flammable. Ferrari then recalled approx. 1000 cars and fixed the issue. They didn’t run from the blame, unlike some of our previous examples.
Bad Volkswagen Emissions
Volkswagen was caught falsifying their testing results regarding the fuel emissions in their diesel engines. This happened in just 2015, was discovered and in 2018 the CEO of Audi was apprehended due to knowing this. They used a particular software program that would falsify the information to make the car look better.
And, just when you thought it was only in the 2000s, we have more. Scandals and cover-ups have been in the automotive industry for years. Cars are money and when you produce a lot of faulty cars, it can mean a huge chunk of money. But, it can also mean lives, apparently, this isn’t as important as money.
Pinto made by Ford, had exploding fuel tanks. This was a deadly and massive scandal in the 70’s that cost many lives. There were over 500 deaths reported due to this issue and 900 injured. It was because if the car was hit from the rear end, it would explode due to the gas tank design. Ford was well aware of this and sold the car anyway. The problem was the tank was put behind the rear axle but in front of the rear bumper. This caused the explosion on impact.
Delorean cars are pretty well known, despite the lack of them on the road. This is due to the Back to the Future movies that they were used in. However, the Delorean was made by a man named John DeLorean and he wasn’t new to the automotive industry. He once was the youngest executive to GM. However, he made some risky investments and got wrapped up in the money and fame. In 1982 the Delorean factory closed, he was arrested and charged with selling Cocaine to fund the company. Although, later was found not guilty.
Chevy’s Losing their Engines
In the 1970’s Chevy had issues with the engine mounts. They wouldn’t admit there was a problem and the National Highway Safety Patrol put out a warning. They recalled over 7 million cars but never replaced the engine mounts, instead, they reinforced the original brackets to save money.
There were only 51 Tucker 48 cars actually produced by the company founded by Preston Tucker in the 1940’s. It has a horizontal engine and was powered with 166 hp engine. There are very few left today and if you happen to find one, they can sell for $3 Million or more. The factory was shut down due to unethical fundraising. The owner and the partners were charged with fraud.
Mitsubishi isn’t so Great Either
Mitsubishi Motors were caught falsifying their data on their autos. In the early 90’s they were trying to make their cars look better to the public and ended up costing them $2.5 Billion in damages. And, breaking their trust with consumers.
Audi on the Run
In the early 80’s Audi have the same acceleration issue that Toyota had years later. They recalled 5000 cars for sudden acceleration and no way to brake. This caused many accidents, however, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted tests and determined it was not the manufacturer’s fault. But, the fault of the drivers not being used to where the gas and brake pedal were located in the car. Either way, the lawsuits started rolling in and the Lexus owners were upset as the scandal devalued their car.
Jealousy gets to GM
Chrysler’s Airflow was a great car that was built using the streamlining design. It has a 122 hp engine with a lot of power, but GM didn’t like the fact this car was so great. They were jealous and because they were jealous, they started a smear campaign that told lies and faulse allegations about the car. This made the general public skeptical and not want to buy the car. So, the production didn’t last that long. This was done in the late 30’s.