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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

GM Announces More Ignition Problem Recalls

General Motors cars are displayed at the Sierra Chevrolet auto dealership as storm clouds build in the distance on March 2, 2010 in Monrovia, California. (David McNew/Getty Images)

General Motors cars are displayed at the Sierra Chevrolet auto dealership as storm clouds build in the distance on March 2, 2010 in Monrovia, California. (David McNew/Getty Images)

General Motors says it needs to change or replace the keys for about 3.4 million cars because they could cause the ignition switch to move out of position if they’re carrying too much weight.

GM said in a statement Monday that the switches can rotate out of “run” if the key has excess weight and the car “experiences some jarring event,” such as hitting a pothole or crossing a railroad track.

That can shut off the engines and disable power steering, causing drivers to lose control. Also, the air bags won’t work. The recall affects seven cars with model years ranging from 2000 to 2014.

GM is already recalling 2.6 million older small cars, mostly in the U.S., for a similar problem where the ignition switch slips out of “run” and causes an engine stall. In that case, the problem is with the mechanics of the switch. In this latest recall, GM says the problem is with the design of the key.

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Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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