GM’s Faulty Ignition Switch Could Have Been Fixed For 57 Cents
“I am deeply sorry,” said the new CEO of General Motors to a congressional panel.
CEO Mary Barra has testified in a congressional hearing today saying that she was disturbed by past GM comments that the cost of replacing defective switches in some cars was too high.
‘I am deeply sorry,’ Barra said at the beginning of the hearing.
At a hearing Tuesday, members of a House subcommittee demanded answers from Barra about why the automaker used the switch in small cars such as the Chevrolet Cobalt and Saturn Ion even though it knew the part didn’t meet GM’s own specifications…
Colorado Representative Diana DeGette held up a switch for one of the cars and said a small spring inside it failed to provide enough force, causing car engines to turn off when they went over a bump.
DeGette showed how easy it was for a light set of keys to move the ignition out of the ‘run’ position. That can cause the engine to stall and the driver to lose power steering and power brakes.
‘Documents provided by GM show that this unacceptable cost increase was only 57 cents,’ DeGette said.
In her prepared statement, Barra said she doesn’t know ‘why it took years for a safety defect to be announced,’ but ‘we will find out.’