Volvo announced a recall on Thursday morning that includes several vehicles, including its all-new XC90 and S90, the latter of which is still brand new to the market. According to the Associated Press, the recall was issued following reports of unsafe seat belts.
Volvo is known for its safety, so the recall comes as a surprise. In fact, I was actually on the scene of the company’s XC90 crash tests in Sweden and watched as engineers inspected crash-test dummies. I know first-hand how safe the cars can be. The problem boils down to a buckle stud attached to the seat belts, the Associated Press explained. It can “come loose, allowing the buckle to separate from a bracket.” In such a situation, the driver’s seatbelt can fail, leading to all sorts of injuries and even death.
This recall is a big deal because Volvo has a new “Volvo Vision 2020” plan whereby in the year 2020 it hopes that not a single person is seriously injured or killed in new Volvo automobiles. In order to achieve that, it’s going to need to catch issues like this one early, if they pop up, or try to find them ahead of time.
To be fair, the company’s autonomous efforts, however, may help prevent crashes altogether, which sort of takes some of the pressure off of the seat belt mechanism (though they’ll still be required, of course.)
An easy fix for the Volvo seat belt recall
Thankfully the fix is pretty easy for Volvo owners. If you have a 2016/2017 S60, S90, XC60, XC90 or V60, you may be affected. If so, all you need to do is take the car to a Volvo dealer after December 12 and have the buckle replaced. It’ll be free.