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GM Recalls Bolt for Fire Hazard, Unrelated to Previous Battery Issues

Chevrolet Bolt EV | Photo: Chevrolet
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Daniel Rufiange
In Canada, 19,898 vehicles are affected by the recall

•    GM is recalling 140,000 Chevrolet Bolts due to a fire hazard.

•    The problem is related to seat belt pretensioners that could release a gas that might potentially ignite the carpets in a collision.

•    In Canada, 19,898 models are affected by the recall campaign.

•    Vehicles built since October 26 are no longer affected by the potentially defective parts.

The Chevrolet Bolt has had a tough year, notably with the massive recall of all units due to a fire risk related to a problem with the battery, a problem traced back to supplier LG.

The company stopped sales and production of its model at the same time as the new generation appeared on the market. The timing was simply atrocious for the vcompany and ites little EV..

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Repairs and solutions were found, and the model is now back at dealers and in the hands of owners. But now another problem has arisen that requires another major recall of the vehicle, this time affecting 140,000 units, 19,898 of which are in Canada. The glitch is also related to a fire. The good news is that it's not the battery.

The problem is related to the vehicle's seat belts and carpet. As an unusual problem requiring a recall, it's hard to find another recall that beats it. According to GM, only 1% of recalled models have the defect. Bolts built between July 26, 2016 and October 25, 2022 are equipped with a seatbelt pretensioner whose gas released in the event of a collision could ignite the carpet fibers in the B-pillar. Thus, a fire could break out at this spot.

GM became aware of the potential problem on September 15 following a reported incident in South Korea with a 2018 Bolt. The automaker launched an investigation in October and unfortunately discovered three similar incidents in which carpet fibers were ignited by the exhaust from the pretensioner gas. The recall campaign, launched on December 8, is a direct result.

Owners will be contacted beginning January 30, 2023. Owners will need to visit a dealer to have metallic tape applied under the carpet near the front seat belt pretensioners. On certain model year vehicles, the technician will also install covers over the pretensioners.


Daniel Rufiange
Daniel Rufiange
Automotive expert
  • Over 17 years' experience as an automotive journalist
  • More than 75 test drives in the past year
  • Participation in over 250 new vehicle launches in the presence of the brand's technical specialists