UPDATE: Honda Announces Recall; Recommends Franchise Dealers Stop Selling Affected Models
TORRANCE, Calif. — Honda on Tuesday issued a recall of more than 400,000 Odysseys and Elements after receiving complaints that the brake pedals feel "soft" or are not working as well as expected over time.
The units covered by the recall include approximately 344,000 Odyssey and 68,000 Element vehicles from the 2007-2008 model years.
The automaker said it intends to modify the Vehicle Stability Assist modulator associated with the brake pedal on the affected models.
Late Tuesday, company spokesperson Chris Martin recommended that Honda franchise dealers cease selling the vehicles impacted by the recall.
"Honda dealers, we would ask them to impose a stop sale on any vehicles they have in used-vehicle inventory until they can affect this repair," Martin told Auto Remarketing.
However, Martin stopped short of extending the recommendation to other franchise or independent dealers as well as auction companies.
"It's really going to be individually up to whoever owns the vehicle what they choose to do. We can't enforce a stop sale at any place other than dealers that we offer recommendations," Martin explained.
Apparently, the VSA modulators were assembled in such a way as to allow air intrusion, which can then enter the modulator during self-check mode.
While the automaker said only a "miniscule" amount of air can enter the system during each check, that over a period of months or even years, the air can accumulate and result in a "soft brake pedal" as consumers are claiming.
"Although not all vehicles being recalled are affected by this issue, we are recalling all possible units to assure all customers that their vehicles will perform correctly," the automaker explained in a statement.
Honda indicated that it's announcing this recall to encourage all owners of these vehicles to take their unit to an authorized dealer as soon as they receive notification by mail to schedule an appointment for repair.
Honda said it will start notifying customers at the end of April.
Furthermore, in addition to contacting customers by mail, Honda said that after April 19 owners of affected vehicles can determine if their unit requires repair. Owners can visit www.recalls.honda.com or call (800) 999-1009 and select option No. 4.
"When Honda identifies concerns of this nature, nothing is more important to the company than fulfilling our obligation and responsibility to alert our customers," the automaker emphasized in the statement.