General Motors has issued a recall for 38,197 2012 and 2013 model year Buick LaCrosse eAssist, Regal eAssist, and Chevrolet Malibu Eco mild hybrid vehicles due to a malfunctioning generator control module that could slowly drain the battery, causing an indicator to light up in the dash. If that indicator is ignored by the driver, the engine may stall. And in the most extreme cases reported, “a burning or melting odor, smoke, and, in rare instances, a fire in the trunk” can take place. Most incidents are said to have occurred within the vehicles’ first 1,000 miles of operation.
GM says the issue is not with the eAssist battery pack itself, but is rather caused by the overheating of the control board. Only one trunk fire has been reported, and no injuries have been reproted at this time. Vehicles built after December 2012 are not part of the recall.