Honda is being urged to issue a recall on its 2023 model HR-V vehicles after receiving hundreds of complaints related to the rear windshield spontaneously shattering, CBS News reports.
Over 300 complaints of the problem have been filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Michael Brooks, executive director at the advocacy group Center for Auto Safety, told Consumer Reports that it’s atypical for a newer model to receive so many complaints.
Consumer Reports has called on the automaker to issue a recall, with one of its auto testers having experienced the problem himself after using the vehicle’s remote start function to begin warming up on a cold morning.
One HR-V owner who filed a complaint experienced their window shattering on Jan. 20 in Flanders, New Jersey. Though temps fell to a low of 18 degrees, the vehicle had been parked inside the garage when the window shattered.
“While our vehicle was parked inside our garage, the rear windshield completely shattered outward, without any impact or object hitting it ... It was like it exploded,” wrote the owner to the NHTSA.
The problem seems to be linked to the use of the rear window defrost. Honda has cited the assembly process as the root cause, and that the rear window sealer being warmed up by the defroster is causing the glass to weaken with use.
In response, Honda will be launching a voluntary product update campaign, estimated to begin in April or May 2024. In the meantime, they are instructing drivers who experience problems with their rear windows to contact a Honda dealer or their customer service.
However, some have presented a recall as the best path forward, such as William Wallace, associate director of safety policy at Consumer Reports.
“For the sake of its customers and everyone on the road, Honda should convert its service campaign to an official safety recall of all affected vehicles, which would help get the word out and maximize the number of owners who get their cars fixed,” Wallace told Consumer Reports.