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Thu Apr 25, 2019, 10:17 AM

The NHTSA is at work, monitoring auto safety.

I haven't heard about TRUMP wanting to cut the budget for that agency yet, and that's a good thing.

I took my 2013 KIA Soul to the dealership yesterday after getting a recall notice for a potential problem with the car's catalytic converter that NHTSA was tracking. That agency ordered a recall, and KIA Motors came up with a solution that involve a patch to the car's Engine Control Unit (ECA) computer. That's the first recall I've ever had on a car I owned, since most of my vehicles have been older used ones.

I called the dealer on Tuesday, and they scheduled me for service the next day, to my surprise. When I dropped the car off for the ECU update, I asked the service manager if they had ever seen the problem the recall was supposed to fix. He said, "Nope. Not even once."

Half an hour later, the update was done, the dealer had washed the car, and I was on my way home. No muss. No fuss. While I waited, I checked out the new 2020 KIA Soul in the showroom. My wife and I are going to buy one later this year. One of the showroom salespeople pointed out the changes from my 2013, but didn't really try to sell me the car. I took a brochure.

That's how it's supposed to work. That's why there is an NHTSA. That's how dealers are supposed to handle recalls. That's why I hope Donald Trump has never heard of the NHTSA. I hope he keeps his short, stubby little fingers off that agency.

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