Honda is recalling about 807,000 Honda Odyssey, Honda Pilot and Acura MDX models with automatic transmissions because they could roll away when the key is removed from the ignition and the vehicle is in park. In a statement, Honda says the Odyssey and Pilot models are from the 2003 to 2004 model years and MDX models are from the 2003 to 2006 model years.
The Associated Press explains, “The mechanism that locks the key in the ignition while the vehicles are in gear can wear out. When that happens, drivers of the vans and SUVs are able to remove keys without shifting into park.” According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there have been 113 customer complaints related to the problem. Of those complaints, NHTSA is aware of two injury reports and 27 crashes. In defect investigation report, NHTSA says one injury occurred when an owner tried to stop a 2003 Odyssey as it rolled away.
Of the complaints submitted, one owner says the vehicle rolled away with a child inside. “The car was in park with no keys in the ignition and my six year old bumped the shifter out of park and the vehicle rolled down the driveway with him inside. We were right next to the car and were able to jump in and hit the brakes. In a controlled setting, we have replicated this several times.”
Honda will make necessary repairs for free and will begin sending letters to owners in February 2013. To find out if your vehicle needs maintenance, you can go to www.recalls.honda.com, www.recalls.acura.com or reach NHTSA at 1-888-327-4236 and http://www.safercar.gov/.
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