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Maruti Suzuki dealers will contact owners of all the affected vehicles, the company said. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/ Mint
Maruti Suzuki dealers will contact owners of all the affected vehicles, the company said. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/ Mint

Maruti Suzuki recalls 69,555 units of DZire, Swift, Ritz

Maruti will inspect, repair wiring harness fitment of 69,555 cars manufactured between 8 March 2010 and 11 August 2013

New Delhi: India’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd said that it had recalled 69,555 units of its popular hatchbacks Swift and Ritz, and entry-level sedan DZire built between 8 March 2010 and 11 August 2013.

Maruti Suzuki said it will inspect and repair the wiring harness fitment (a device which transmits signals or electrical power) of diesel vehicles—55,938 units of an old variant of the DZire, 12,486 units of the old Swift and 1,131 of Ritz.

“This exercise does not pertain to any other model of the company or its exports," the company said in a statement.

Maruti Suzuki dealers will contact owners of all the affected vehicles. The dealer workshop technicians will inspect the wiring harness fitment condition and carry out the necessary repairs free of cost.

This is the second recall by the firm since April when it issued one of India’s biggest vehicle recalls by contacting 103,311 customers who purchased models such as the Ertiga, Swift and DZire, manufactured between 12 November 2013 and 4 February 2014 to replace faulty fuel filler neck (the tube leading down to the fuel tank).

Indian car makers are becoming proactive about recalls, suggesting that a voluntary code put in place by the industry in 2013 is working and that they’ve been able to overcome the stigma attached to such exercises in a climate in which companies are seeking to revive sales after a two-year downturn.

Unlike developed markets such as Europe, Japan or the US, India still has no official recall policy. Typically, an auto maker in India makes an announcement offering to fix any defects and replace faulty components, but escapes penalties and punishments common in developed markets.

The new Motor Vehicle Act, which has been drafted by the ministry for road transport and highways and is expected to be tabled in Parliament during the winter session, is likely to include provisions for penalising errant vehicle makers.

“While it is overwhelming that more and more companies are issuing vehicle recalls, I am hopeful that the new motor vehicle laws will have strict regulations and penalties as the GM episode really tarnished the image of the Indian auto industry," said an expert with a leading consultancy on condition of anonymity.

General Motors India Pvt. Ltd last year admitted to the Indian government that an internal probe had revealed employees of the company violated testing norms, and re-fitted already approved engines in new Tavera models sent for inspection to meet specified emission norms. Also in 2013, GM recalled 114,000 units of the multi-utility vehicle to address issues related to emissions and specifications.

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