The year is off to a rough start for Detroit automakers, at least when it comes to recalls. Another another substantial recall affects 323,232 Chevrolet and GMC heavy-duty pickup trucks because their tailgates spontaneously open.
The recall applies to Silverado HD and Sierra HD trucks from the 2020 through 2024 model years. That includes 2500 and 3500 models, but only those equipped with a power latch on the tailgate. The flawed design allows water to get into the electronic switch used for the latch, which can cause a short circuit. In turn, this could cause the tailgate to unlatch while the vehicle is in park. Sitting still, the gate would likely remain upright. But driving away with the gate unlatched could lead to problems.
Since this problem potentially affects brand-new trucks, General Motors has also issued a stop sale for vehicles currently at dealerships. Documentation posted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states these trucks cannot be driven or traded with other dealers. Furthermore, any certified used pickups on sale at dealerships falling under the recall will lose that certification until repaired.
So what’s the fix? The faulty switch will be replaced with one “that improves resistance to water intrusion.” Dealers have already been notified of the problem; owner notification will begin on March 18. In the meantime, Silverado and Sierra owners can check GM’s recall information center online to see if their truck is affected.
Taking a deeper dive, the issue potentially affects 128,966 Silverados and 194,266 GMC Sierras in HD 2500 or 3500 HD form. Recall documents mention 136 complaints regarding alleged unwanted tailgate openings, with one minor injury claim and three property damage claims among them.
GM isn’t the only Detroit brand struggling with large recalls. Ford started the year by recalling 2.2 million Explorers worldwide for exterior trim that could come loose while driving.