What Is a Recall?

In the fast-paced world of automotive manufacturing, ensuring the safety and reliability of vehicles is paramount. Despite rigorous testing and quality control, defects and safety issues can emerge, and the need for automotive recalls is apparent. 

In this article, we will explore the intricacies of automotive recalls, shedding light on what they are, why they occur, and how consumers can navigate this crucial aspect of the automotive industry. We also uncover the top 10 recalls by vehicle brands throughout 2023.

Firstly, What Is a Recall?

An automotive recall is an official action taken by a vehicle manufacturer, or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), to address a defect or safety issue that has been identified in one or more models. These defects can range from faulty components and design flaws to manufacturing errors. The objective of a recall is to rectify the issue promptly, ensuring the safety of vehicle occupants and preventing potential accidents. 

Why Are Recalls Important?

There are several reasons why a recall is important to both you as a consumer and the manufacturer, they are:

1. Protecting Consumers:

Recalls act as a safety net against potentially hazardous incidents as a result of a defective vehicle. It helps protect consumer safety and well-being.

2. Injury and Fatality Protection:

If safety standards are not met, a recall is a result of either a failed manufacturing process or a part continuously failing out in the field, where many owners have reported issues. A recall is designed to protect people from injuries, illness, and death if they were to continue to use the defective vehicle.

3. Trust and Responsibility:

Automotive manufacturers need to be trusted and relied upon when it comes to consumer safety. It also helps boost confidence between consumers and government regulatory agencies that oversee the automotive industry.

4. Legal Liability Mitigation:

A recall is aimed at reducing automakers’ and consumers’ legal liability and cases against them. It also provides ethical compliance to business practices.

5. Correcting Faults:

The primary goal of automotive recalls is to prevent injuries, illnesses, or fatalities among consumers. Simultaneously, recalls aim to correct the underlying problems that led to the recall in the first place, ensuring a safer driving experience for all. This could also save the manufacturer from more, expensive repairs later down the line if they have to repair every delivered vehicle.

Let’s uncover the most recalls by brand throughout 2023, the results may surprise you.

2023 Recalls In The US From Popular Auto Brands

Below is a chart showing the main Automakers across the US and their associated recall in 2023. According to NHTSA statistics (This list is not extensive, the full list is found on their website).

As we approach the end of 2023, a comprehensive look at the NHTSA statistics reveals a dynamic landscape of automotive recalls across major manufacturers in the United States. Let’s uncover the top 10 brands that have announced the most recalls.

Top 10 Recalls in 2023 According to NHTSA.

1. Ford Motor Company (Recalls: 54)

Ford leads the pack with the highest number of recalls in 2023. These recalls span various models, and as one of the most popular automakers in America, it is understood why there are so many. After all, Ford needs to uphold the trust of millions of vehicle owners.

2. Chrysler (FCA US, LLC) (Recalls: 45)

Following closely, another US car brand, Chrysler demonstrates a damaging threat to their reputation and profits. With 45 recalls, Chrysler’s commitment to consumer safety is clear for everyone to see. The recalls encompass a range of models, emphasizing the company’s dedication to rectifying issues and ensuring the reliability of their vehicles.

3. BMW of North America, LLC (Recalls: 29)

BMW takes the third spot, underlining the prestigious German brand’s commitment to safety and quality, whilst admitting that not every automaker is perfect. With 29 recalls, BMW addresses various concerns, showcasing a proactive stance in maintaining their vehicles’ performance and safeguarding their drivers.

4. Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC (Recalls: 26)

Mercedes-Benz maintains a strong presence in the list of recalls, despite being such a large brand with an excellent reputation, they want to take care of their customers and reduce safety risks. With 26 recalls, the company prioritizes rectifying issues and ensuring that their vehicles adhere to the highest safety standards.

5. Nissan North America, Inc. (Recalls: 22)

Nissan secures a position in the top five recalls, as an affordable brand suitable for all types of consumers, Nissan indicates a proactive approach to consumer safety. With 22 recalls, the company demonstrates a commitment to addressing potential issues promptly and maintaining the reliability of its vehicles.

6. Honda (American Honda Motor Co.) (Recalls: 17)

Honda maintains a strong presence in automotive recalls, the popular automaker has addressed minor and major safety concerns. With 17 recalls, Honda showcases a proactive approach to rectifying potential issues and ensuring the continued trust of their vast consumer base.

7. Kia America, Inc. (Recalls: 20)

Kia secures a spot among the top recalls, despite being known as one of the most reliable brands out there. With 20 recalls, Kia demonstrates a proactive stance in addressing concerns and upholding the performance and reliability of their vehicles.

8. Subaru of America, Inc. (Recalls: 13)

Subaru makes its mark in the top recalls list. With 13 recalls, Subaru is a lesser-known brand in America but still takes a proactive approach to rectifying issues promptly. They do not want any lawsuit against them as a result of a defective part.

9. Tesla, Inc. (Recalls: 13)

As a prominent player in the electric vehicle market, Tesla is not exempt from recalls. With 13 recalls, Tesla has a much different approach to recalls, as they can often solve minor glitches and vehicle settings over the air. Over-the-air updates prevent Tesla owners from visiting the dealership and save the company a lot of money by avoiding physical repairs. 

10. Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (Recalls: 11)

Surprisingly, Porsche rounds out the top 10 recalls, showcasing that not every brand is perfect, and for the safety and performance of their luxury vehicles, 11 recalls were initiated. Porsche actively addresses concerns, ensuring that their vehicles meet the rigorous standards expected by their discerning customer base.

Recalls In 2023

While these top manufacturers lead the recall counts, it’s essential to recognize that recalls are a shared responsibility across the automotive industry. Other prominent manufacturers such as Jaguar Land Rover and Volkswagen have also been actively addressing safety concerns, collectively contributing to a safer driving experience for consumers.

The 2023 automotive recall data reflects that even the most prominent brands have safety concerns and manufacturing issues from themselves or their suppliers. It also shows a proactive and collective effort by major manufacturers to prioritize consumer safety, despite leaving owners frustrated. 

The high number of recalls underscores the industry’s commitment to maintaining public trust and ensuring that safety standards are met as closely as possible, otherwise, owners will want to take back control.

If you or your loved ones are the registered owner of a vehicle plagued by recalls, call 833-LemonFirm today to speak with a case analyst who can help you sort or fact from fiction concerning your consumer rights.

About the Author
Sepehr Daghighian is a partner with CCA that is well-versed in all aspects of lemon-law litigation. A 2005 graduate of Loyola Law School, Mr. Daghighian has been practicing litigation throughout the state of California for over 13-years. In this time, Mr. Daghighian has advocated on behalf of California consumers in hundreds of lemon law cases throughout our great state. Mr. Daghighian has also successfully tried numerous such cases to verdict in both Federal and State Court.