General Motors has issued a recall for 2011 models of the Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Avalanche 1500, Chevrolet Silverado 1500, and GMC Sierra 1500. At issue is a manufacturing flaw that affects the rear axles of those vehicles, which could result in sudden loss of control while driving.
According to a bulletin issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the rear axle cross pin for those four models may have been improperly heat-treated. That would affect the integrity of the part, meaning that it could fracture and become displaced within the axle. If that were to happen, the axle could lock and the driver could lose control of the vehicle.
Worse, this condition could develop with little or no warning. The NHTSA says that owners might hear a banging noise coming from the rear axle, which would indicate that trouble's looming, but that may not happen in all cases.
So far, the recall affects 1,262 vehicles. GM says that cross pins will be replaced free of charge once the recall begins in earnest next month. If you have questions in the meantime, we suggest you call your dealer, or ring Cadillac at 866-982-2339, Chevrolet at 800-630-2438, or GMC at 866-996-9463. (Make sure to mention GM safety recall #100426.) You can also visit www.GMOwnerCenter.com or call the NHTSA at 888-327-4236 and reference their recall campaign #10V643000.[NHTSA]