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Power glitch stalls Great Wall V200 ute

Harness safety: The latest safety recall for the Great Wall V200 involves an electrical short that could flatten the ute’s battery.

Wires rubbing on radiator pull more than 9000 Great Wall utes back to workshops

17 Jan 2014

CHINESE car-maker Great Wall is recalling more than 9000 V200 diesel-engined utes after discovering wires can come into contact with the radiator and flatten the battery.

The recall, published today on the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s website, said 9134 V200 utes were affected, and Great Wall was mailing owners to tell them of the fault and ask them to contact a dealership.

According to Great Wall, the ute’s wiring harness could rub on the bottom of the radiator and in some instances could wear through the wiring’s protective sleeve.

According to the alert, the defect could cause an “earthing point preventing the wiring system from functioning correctly, resulting in the alternator dash light coming on or a flat battery”.

In more extreme cases, the wiring harness could melt internally.

A spokesman for Great Walls’ Australian distributor, Ateco Automotive Asian brands public relations consultant Daniel Cotterill, told GoAuto that a handful of cases of the wiring failing had been reported here.

“The worst we have seen is a car where the harness in question earthed to the extent where it didn’t allow the alternator to function properly so it didn’t charge the battery and the car didn’t start,” he said. “That’s how it was found.”

Mr Cotterill said inspecting the bracket would take about 20 minutes, extending to half an hour if the insulation around the harness needed replacing. If wires were exposed, it would take about two hours to replace the engine harness, he said.

He said the fault did not affect the petrol-powered V240 ute, and that of the vehicles recalled, Ateco expected only 20 to 30 would show exposed wires where the outer insulation had rubbed away.

This week’s recall of the V200 is the third safety recall issued for Great Wall’s V-Series workhorse, following an issue with the front seat belt mechanism potentially failing to restrain occupants under extreme loads in 2009 and a handbrake glitch in 2010.

The Ateco recall also follows on from an asbestos scare in 2012 when gaskets containing the substance were found in Great Wall and Chery vehicles imported to Australia.

Great Wall’s V-Series ute was one of the vehicles scooped up in the asbestos scare.

Rather than replace the engine intake and exhaust gaskets, the ACCC asked the car-makers’s distributors to fit warning stickers to the vehicles.

However, Great Wall has so far replaced the gaskets in most diesel-powered V200s and around 3300 petrol V240s, for a total in excess of 15,000 units.

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