India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki on Friday announced that it will recall 63,493 petrol smart hybrid (SHVS) variants of Ciaz, Ertiga, and XL6 manufactured between January 1 and November 21, 2019. This is one of the biggest recalls by the company so far.
Maruti Suzuki said it will inspect the vehicles for a possible issue with the motor generator unit (MGU). “A possible defect may have occurred in the MGU during manufacturing by an overseas global part supplier,” Maruti said in a statement.
In August, the company had announced a voluntary recall of 40,618 units of the WagonR (1 litre) manufactured between November 15, 2018 and August 12, 2019.
“In the interest of its customers, Maruti Suzuki has decided to proactively recall the vehicles for inspection and those found OK will be released immediately. Vehicles requiring replacement of faulty part will be retained for part replacement free of cost,” the company said.
It added that Maruti Suzuki dealers may make alternate mobility arrangements if required.
“Starting 6th December 2019 owners of the suspected vehicles under this recall campaign will be contacted by Maruti Suzuki dealers for inspection and replacement of the faulty part,” the company said.
Customers of suspected vehicles can visit the company website and fill in the chassis number to check if their vehicle needs attention. The chassis number is embossed on the vehicle ID plate and is also in the vehicle invoice/registration documents.
Globally, a recall makes it mandatory for the manufacturer to notify the customer and rectify the issue, with the process being monitored by an official authority. Since India does not have an official recall policy, automakers have to adhere to the voluntary code on vehicle recall set by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), a body of automakers.
SIAM’s code, published in 2012, says “if in the opinion of the manufacturer some vehicles have issues which pose a safety defect”, such vehicles are “voluntarily inspected and rectified” by the manufacturer or importer.
Maruti Suzuki’s sales have been falling for the past few months due to a slowdown in the auto sector over BS-VI (Bharat Stage VI) transition, a drop in consumer demand, and a liquidity crisis. In November, the retail sales of Ciaz fell by 62.3% from 3,838 to 1,448 YoY (year-on-year). Its utility vehicle segment which includes Gypsy, Ertiga, XL6, S-Cross, and Vitara Brezza fell by 1.3% to 23,204 while the company’s total domestic vehicle sales fell by 3.2% YoY.
Recently, the company also announced a price hike starting next month due to an increase in various input costs. “The price increase will vary for different models,” Maruti Suzuki said in a communication to exchanges.
Maruti Suzuki shares were trading down 1.77 % at ₹6,881.35 apiece.