Nissan Motor Co. has increased the number of Altima sedans recalled because of a possible secondary hood latch to include roughly 870,000 cars, according to Reuters. Nissan had originally recalled 238,000 Altimas last October that were made between March 6, 2012 and February 28, 2013, but now they are including Altimas made from March 6, 2012 to December 31, 2014.
The secondary latch can only open the hood if the primary latch is released, but if the primary latch is not engaged, the secondary latch could fly open while the car is moving. Nissan still does not know what is causing the problem and is trying to figure out how to fix it. A spokesman for the company said on Friday, “Altima drivers can be sure their hood will not fly up as long as they don’t pull the primary hood release while driving or leave the primary hood release undone prior to driving.” The company stated no injuries or crashes have been reported because of the problem as yet but a few incidents of hoods flying up and damaging the cars have been reported.
The Altima is one of the best selling cars on the market, ranking second among all cars in 2015 in the U.S. trailing only the Toyota Camry. Its sales comprise one quarter of Nissan’s total sales.
In October, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said the cause of the problem could be debris, corrosion, and interference between the hood’s inner panel and the secondary latch lever, which could make the secondary hood latch remain in the unlatched position.
Nissan said it will “implement an interim procedure to inspect and lubricate the secondary hood latch assembly on all subject vehicles manufactured prior to December 31, 2014 in dealer inventory prior to retail sale.” The secondary hood latch Nissan uses is not used by any other automaker.