If the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) believes there is a safety-related defect in a group of cars, it reserves the right to open an investigation. These investigations are often sparked by warranty claims and consumer complaints online.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will sometimes pass a request to the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) if it believes there is a possible safety-related defect in a group of vehicles.
These investigations are often sparked by consumer complaints online, warranty claim data, or petitions from consumer safety agencies.
My Car is Being Investigated, Now What?
Now? You wait. And because this is the government we’re talking about and a problem potentially resulting in millions of dollars in recall costs, you can bet you’ll be waiting a while.
The ODI splits its investigations into multiple stages:
The screening where they review the complaints which sparked the investigation
Petition analysis where petitions for defect investigations or reviews of recalls are performed
The actual investigation which is split into a preliminary evaluation and an engineering analysis
Judgement day where a determination will be made on if a recall is needed
What can be Investigated by NHTSA?
NHTSA and ODI will only look into safety-related defects – busted axles, engine fires, tires popping off, etc.
That means that complaints regarding peeling paint, radio gremlins, or poor infotainment – no matter how widespread – won’t be investigated.
Investigations in the News
A look at the latest investigation news for Nissan vehicles. Switch to other topics: