Subaru recalls 270,000 Ascent SUVs over fire risk

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Subaru is recalling more than 270,000 Ascent SUVs, model years 2019-2022, because they could catch fire. Photo courtesy of Subaru

Dec. 13 (UPI) — Subaru is recalling more than a quarter-million Ascent SUVs because of a fire risk, while warning drivers to park the vehicles outside and away from buildings.

Subaru issued the recall for more than 270,000 Ascent SUVs, the auto manufacturer’s largest vehicle that seats up to eight, with model years 2019-2022.

Subaru says an electrical grounding bolt connected to the vehicle’s heating system may have been incorrectly fastened during vehicle production, which could cause it to melt and catch fire.

Subaru said there have been no crashes or injuries due to the Positive Temperature Coefficient heater, but the automaker is urging drivers to get their vehicles inspected at no charge.

The PTC heater is part of a back-up heating system that runs until the engine is warmed up enough to heat the passenger cabin.

Subaru said it will replace the PTC Heater Ground Bolts, the ground wire and connector holder, if needed. Subaru expects only about 0.6% of the vehicles will require the ground and connector replacement.

Until inspections are completed, Subaru is urging drivers not to park their Ascent SUVs in garages or car ports, and to keep them outside and away from buildings.

The automaker is also warning drivers to never leave the vehicle unattended with the engine running and to pull over immediately if they smell any smoke coming from the dash or driver’s footwell area while driving.

Those affected by the recall will be contacted by Subaru within the next 60 days. Vehicle owners can also check to see if their SUV is affected by the recall by typing in their vehicle’s 17-digit vehicle identification number at Subaru’s recalls website or at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration site.

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