General Motors recalling more than 700,000 minivans

Thursday, December 23rd 2004, 11:15 am
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) _ General Motors Corp. is recalling 717,302 minivans because passengers could injure their wrists or arms on the power sliding door, the automaker and federal government said Thursday.

The vehicles affected are 1997-2005 model Chevrolet Venture, 1997-1999 Pontiac Transport/Montana, 2000-2005 Pontiac Montana and 1997-2004 Oldsmobile Silhouette.

The defect involves the interior power sliding door handle on the passenger's side. A person's wrist or arm can be injured if the handle is held while the door is opening.

The recall comes more than three months after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it received 21 complaints about the sliding doors, including 19 reports of arm or wrist injuries and 13 broken bones. After a review, GM said it identified 91 injuries for vehicles built in model years 1997-2004.

GM also is recalling 133,425 Opel Sintra minivans sold internationally, mostly in Canada, according Alan Adler, a GM spokesman in Detroit. The vehicle years affected are 1998 and 1999.

Owners will be notified of the recall by the manufacturer beginning in March.

GM said it will replace the original interior sliding door handle on the passenger side with handles that can't be gripped in a way that could cause injury. The company also will replace the handle on the driver's side door to maintain a consistent appearance.