Tensions have escalated in the ongoing war between man and nature. The current battle wasn't started by deer stealthily chewing on garden vegetables or coyotes rooting through garbage, but by spiders who've taken up residence in cars -- specifically, Mazda's Mazda6 sedan.
If you're an arachnophobic Mazda-owner, this may be the week you wished you had a Chevy Cobalt.
According to Reuters, Mazda has recalled Mazda6 vehicles from the 2010, 2011, and 2012 model years. The recall affects only those sedans manufactured at the company's facility in Flat Rock, Michigan and equipped with the 2.5-liter engine. All told, some 65,000 U.S.-registered vehicles are affected.
Mazda issued the recall because in some cars, spider webs have been found blocking fuel lines associated with the Mazda6's evaporative canister vent. Those webs can diminish the flow of fuel, putting stress on the car's fuel tank due to a drop in fuel pressure. As as result, the tank may crack, and if the cracks are severe, gas could leak out, boosting the risk of a fire.
What's interesting/creepy is that this is the second time Mazda has issued a spider-themed recall for the Mazda6: in 2011, the automaker recalled 2009 and 2010 models of the sedan for exactly the same problem, which was attributed to the Yellow Sac spider and its fondness for the scent of gasoline.
Mazda hasn't confirmed whether the current recall is associated with the Yellow Sac spider, but if it is, that's bad news for consumers: the two species of Yellow Sac spiders residing in the U.S. can be found across the entire continent.
As with many things these days, Mazda says that the fix for the Mazda6 is a simple software upgrade. Once owners receive official recall notices from Mazda, they'll be able to take their vehicles to Mazda dealers, who'll perform that upgrade free of charge.
No word yet on whether PETA will accept donations of spider-infested Mazda6 sedans again. Stay tuned.