General Motors remembers nearly 51,000 Chevrolet electric cars in the United States whose battery modules have been found to be in danger of catching fire.
The recall covers the Chevrolet Bolts from the 2017 to 2019 model years and comes after an earlier recall of adding software designed to prevent the car's batteries from overheating. Two fires have been reported since the first recall, including one in a Bolt that had the updated software installed.
The recalled bolts use battery packs made in South Korea by LG Chem, a close partner in GM's electric vehicle strategy.
Until replacement modules are available, the company has advised owners to avoid parking their cars in garages or near buildings, and to avoid fully charging the batteries. "
GM and LG have identified the simultaneous presence of two rare manufacturing defects in the same battery cell as the cause of the battery fire in certain Chevrolet Bolt EVs," the company said. “As part of this recall, G.M. replaces defective battery modules in the recall population. We will notify customers when spare parts are ready. ”
The recall comes as G.M. goes to increase the production of electric cars. It plans to introduce more than two dozen models to the US market over the next few years, and is building several battery plants in a joint venture with LG. G.M. has said they hope the sale of electric vehicles will take off and surpass the sales of gasoline-powered cars and light trucks within a decade.
The company has set a goal of shutting down combustion vehicle production by 2035.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration originally set up an investigation into fires involving the Chevrolet Bolt last fall and issued a new warning last week. The original recall was issued in November.