By Matt Schmitz on April 24, 2014
Vehicles Affected: About 109,000 model-year 2001-2004 Mazda Tribute SUVs manufactured between May 22, 2000, and Dec. 19, 2003, and originally sold or currently registered in Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia
The Problem: The vehicles may experience excessive corrosion at the forward attachment of the lower control arm. A separation of the lower control arm can result in a significant loss of steering control, increasing the risk of a crash.
The Fix: Mazda will notify owners starting in mid-May, and dealers will install a redesigned reinforcement cross-brace for free. Parts are not currently available, so owners will receive a second notification when the parts are ready. If owners bring their vehicles to a dealer before the parts arrive, dealers will inspect the subframe and decide whether the vehicle is safe to drive; if not, a rental vehicle will be provided.
What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Mazda at 800-222-5500, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit www.safercar.gov for more info.
News Editor Matt Schmitz is a veteran Chicago journalist indulging his curiosity for all things auto while helping to inform car shoppers. Email Matt