Maruti recalls its A-Star cars in thousands

Following on the heels of troubled automakers Toyota and Honda, Maruti recalls one lakh units of its hatchback ‘A-Star’ to replace faulty fuel pump parts.

The country's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India is recalling about one lakh units of its flagship export model 'A-Star' to replace a faulty fuel pump part, reports PTI.

According to sources, the company is replacing a faulty rubber gasket in about one lakh cars—manufactured before August 2009 and sold in domestic as well as overseas markets—to prevent any possible fuel leakage.

The problem was discovered in an internal survey by the company but no complaint has been received so far, they added.

A company spokesperson commented, “At Maruti Suzuki, we constantly monitor quality of our products through feedback and internal analysis. In one such exercise in November 2009, we came across an anomaly reported in the fuel tank in some of the vehicles and by December, 2009, we started contacting the customers through letters.”

The company started replacing the gasket from December 2009, and has so far changed the part in about 50,000 units.

Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) had launched its fifth global model—A-Star—on 19 November 2008. The 998cc K10B petrol-engine car is manufactured only in India at its Manesar facility.

The recalled vehicles belong to a lot made till August 22 last year, the spokesperson said.

"No problem has been reported by customers. However, as a proactive step, we decided to check all vehicles from the lot, around one lakh units including those exported overseas. We are changing fuel pump gasket and 'O' ring at no cost to customer," he added.

The final cost for this replacement would be shared with the supplier partner after completion of the entire exercise.

A-Star is currently exported to about 70 countries and is sold as Suzuki Alto in Europe, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Some of the other major markets are Chile, Angola, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Algeria and UAE, where it is sold as Suzuki Celerio.

Japanese car major Nissan also sells A-Star in the European market under a contract manufacturing agreement with MSI's parent Suzuki. Nissan sells the model as Pixo.

In December last year, A-Star had crossed the one-lakh mark of overseas shipments in less than a year of selling the car in the global markets. It started the export of the car since January 2009. The company is expecting to double its exports of A-Star this fiscal on the back of robust demand. It exported 70,023 units in 2008-09.

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