Under pressure from federal regulators and legislators, General Motors this year has been reviewing past safety problems. That has resulted in 54 recalls affecting about 25.7 million vehicles in the United States.
But there may be limits: GM has resisted recalling almost 1.8 million full-size pickup trucks and sport-utility vehicles from the 1999 to 2003 model years for corrosion-related brake failures, saying the issue is one of maintenance. The resistance has come even though the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been investigating the issue since 2010, and the agency has now received about 1,000 complaints from owners.
GM has resisted recalling the pickups and SUVs, telling regulators that rusted brake lines are a routine maintenance issue. In addition, the automaker says, the vehicles have dual brake lines, so "the affected vehicle would be capable of stopping."
In a statement this year about the issue, the company said rusted brake lines were an industrywide problem.
New York Times