2011-2013 Chevrolet Volt Recall Limits Idle Time To Avert Carbon Monoxide Danger


2013 Chevrolet Volt

2013 Chevrolet Volt

Enlarge Photo

A recall has been issued for about 64,000 Chevrolet Volt extended range electric cars from model years 2011, 2012, and 2013, due to the potential for hazardous carbon-monoxide exposure.

The recall addresses an issue we wrote about more than two years ago: The Volt's keyless entry system can allow owners to leave the car running, inadvertently, in a confined space like a garage.

MORE: Are Hybrid & Electric-Car Keyless Entry Fobs A Safety Hazard?

When the Volt is running on battery power, there is no engine sound to remind drivers that the car is on.

And with keyless entry, it's possible for drivers to forget that their cars are running, and leave them that way unattended for long periods of time.

2013 Chevrolet Volt - Driven, December 2012

2013 Chevrolet Volt - Driven, December 2012

Enlarge Photo

As long as the key fob is nearby--say, inside a house while the car is parked in the garage--the affected Volts can stay on until their batteries drain, at which point the gasoline engine will start itself up.

The recall includes 50,249 Volts in the U.S., and 13,937 in Canada and other foreign markets.

ALSO SEE: Chevy Volt Electric Car: Only Current GM Model NOT Recalled This Year

General Motors is aware of two injuries related to this issue, both from carbon monoxide exposure, the company said in a statement released to Automotive News (subscription required).

Chevrolet dealers will update Volt software for free to limit the amount of time the cars can remain idling.

2013 Chevrolet Volt - Driven, December 2012

2013 Chevrolet Volt - Driven, December 2012

Enlarge Photo

GM has not released details on the timing of the recall, but it is reportedly instructing dealers not to sell used Volts from the affected model years.

The carmaker also notified the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of the issue, although the agency hasn't issued a formal recall notice yet.

RELATED: 2011-2014 Chevrolet Volt Hatchbacks Struts To Be Replaced For 'Customer Satisfaction'

Until now, the Volt had been the only GM vehicle not recently recalled.

The company did, however, launch a "customer satisfaction" program in January to replace weak rear-hatch struts.

[hat tips: Ryan Cody, Ryan Turner]

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