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Glitch Causes Seattle Mazda to be Stuck on Public Radio

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Feb. 14, 2022—A bizarre glitch in some Mazda models caused Seattle-area drivers to have their vehicle's radio stuck on the local public radio station indefinitely.

According to a report from the Seattle Times, an issue with the affected vehicles' Connectivity Master Units caused a glitch that forced the vehicle's infotainment systems to get stuck to KUOW, Seattle's NPR station.

The report says model year 2014-2017 vehicles were affected, and a service manager for an area Mazda dealership said the only fix is to replace the corrupted CMUs; that translates to a $1,500 repair for affected to customers. 

The issue reportedly stemmed from the radio station sending out image files through their signal "with no extension," according to an engineering professor cited in the report. That, in turn, could have thrown off the code in the system because it was never meant to handle those kinds of files.

An email from Mazda says the automaker has notified dealers to help customers fill out a "goodwill request" to order parts and schedule a free repair when supply is available, though no one knows when that might be due to supply chain issues.

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