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Mandatory vehicle recalls for Canada?

Mandatory vehicle recalls for Canada?

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As you may already know, Vehicle Recalls are handled pretty well in Canada. Automakers issue them when deemed necessary and dealerships take care of the rest. Consumers merely have to bring in their vehicle when requested or book a service to have it all taken care of automatically.

But this apparently isn’t enough for the government. They are apparently considering making recalls mandatory for all vehicles sold in the country. The new legislation would also include parts and accessories manufacturers too. The legislation would shift responsibility from automakers to schedule recalls over to Transport Canada who could force a recall if they thought it necessary.

It would also increase penalties. Now, automakers merely get some bad press and a telling off from the government. Neither of which have much impact. Under the new rules, Transport Canada could levy huge fines. This legislation was apparently scheduled for November 2015 but was delayed because of the election. It is now allegedly being mooted again.

Total recall
The recall landscape has changed dramatically over the past decade. Not so long ago, recalls were rare and only issued when absolutely necessary. They were regarded as personal failures, issued as quietly as they could be and handled as gently as possible so as not to alarm the public.

Shift forward to the present and all that has changed. Now automakers are open about recalls and issue them whenever they think necessary. The thinking is different. Recalls are balanced between the cost to the company to issue them and the potential cost of liability if they don’t.

This also has to be balanced with perception. Issue too many and people will question the build quality. Don’t issue enough and you risk being seen as not caring about safety and reliability. The rise of our litigious society also has a bearing on whether a recall is issued or not. The risk of lawsuits, either individual or class action, also has to be considered.

So while it might seem that more automakers are issuing recalls leading you to believe quality isn’t what it used to be, there is a lot more to it than that. Cars are many times more complicated than before, with more to go wrong. Society regards value for money and consumer rights incredibly highly now and power is with the consumer. Cost, public perception, risk and the potential for bad publicity should something preventable going wrong makes for a very complicated picture.

Time will tell whether this legislation will pass or not. I think it will and it will be interesting to see just how the automakers respond to such a change.

If you use Car Nation Canada to service your vehicle, we check for recalls and technical bulletins as part of that service. Books yours today!

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