Service Bulletin No. 469 Steerable Tag-Axle Evaluation – 2001-2015 MCI J4500 & 1997-2013 102EL3/E4500 Coaches

January 7, 2019 NHTSA CAMPAIGN NUMBER: 19V027000

Loss of Steering Control

Loss of steering control may increase the risk of a crash.

 

NHTSA Campaign Number: 19V027

Manufacturer Motor Coach Industries

Components STEERING

Potential Number of Units Affected 2,089

 

Summary

Motor Coach Industries (MCI) is recalling certain 2001-2015 J4500 and 1997-2013 102EL3/E4500 coaches equipped with a hydraulic rear axle (tag axle) steering system. The axle’s alignment and low hydraulic pressure in the steering system may cause the steering system to lock, causing a loss of steering control at highway speeds.

 

Remedy

MCI will notify owners. The manufacturer has not yet finalized the recall remedy. MCI issued owners an interim notification on March 26, 2019. Owners may contact MCI customer service at 1-800-241-2947. MCI’s number for this recall is SB 469.

 

Notes

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

 


Service Bulletin No. 469
Steerable Tag-Axle Evaluation

MODEL:
E/J
TYPE:
Field Change Program
SECTION/GROUP:
02 – Rear Axle Steering
DATE:
January 16, 2019

 

Ref. MCI NHTSA Recall No.: 19V-XXX

Ref. MCI Transport Canada Recall No.: 2019-006

 

Customer Complaint:

MCI has received reports of five (5) incidents occurring during 2015 – 2018 involving four (4) MCI E4500 model coaches that experienced a front steering lockup at highway speed.  All of the vehicles have an active hydraulic rear axle steering system.  While the drivers of those vehicles were able to bring the coaches to a stop without injury or damage, the sudden loss of steering control creates the risk of a crash that could cause injury or property damage.

 

Affected Vehicles:

The vehicles that may exhibit this problem are the 1997 – 2013 MCI 102EL3 / 4500 and 2001 – 2015 MCI J4500 model coaches that have the active hydraulic rear axle steering system (see the list of affected vehicles in the appendix to this service bulletin).

 

Cause:

MCI’s investigation to date indicates that a failure to perform proper maintenance on the trailing axle alignment and rear axle steering (RAS) system are the cause of the conditions that may lead to a sudden loss of steering control.  The investigation indicates that the loss of steering control may occur if the vehicle does not have positive caster for the tag axle, and the vehicle has low hydraulic pressure in the RAS. The combination of these two circumstances may allow the tag axle to go into a shimmy under certain road inputs, which may result in the vehicle’s front steering locking up until the vehicle is stopped.

 

Corrective Actions: 

I. IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED BEFORE USING THE AFFECTED VEHICLES: 

A. As noted above, MCI believes that one of the conditions necessary to cause the loss of steering control is if the vehicle does not have the proper caster for the trailing axle.

ACCORDINGLY, MCI STRONGLY RECOMMENDS THAT OWNERS OF THE AFFECTED VEHICLES IMMEDIATELY CHECK AND VERIFY THAT THE TRAILING AXLE CASTER ADJUSTMENT IS WITHIN SPECIFICATION AS EXPLAINED IN THE ORIGINAL MAINTENANCE MANUAL AND SET FORTH IN SECTION 3 OF THIS BULLETIN, AND MAKE ANY NECESSARY ADJUSTMENTS, PRIOR TO USING THE VEHICLES.

B. Also as noted above, MCI believes that one of the conditions necessary to cause the loss of steering control is low hydraulic pressure in the rear axle steering system.

ACCORDINGLY, MCI ALSO STRONGLY RECOMMENDS THAT OWNERS OF THE AFFECTED VEHICLES IMMEDIATELY PERFORM THE PROCEDURES AS EXPLAINED IN THE ORIGINAL MAINTENANCE MANUAL AND IN SECTIONS 4.1, 4.2, AND 4.3 OF THIS BULLETIN, AND MAKE ANY NECESSARY ADJUSTMENTS, PRIOR TO USING THE VEHICLESMCI ALSO STRONGLY RECOMMENDS THAT IF A VEHICLE’S TRAILING AXLE STEERING FAULT TELLTALE OR FLASHING RIDE FAULT LIGHT BECOMES ILLUMINATED WHILE THE VEHICLE IS BEING OPERATED, THE DRIVER SHOULD STOP THE VEHICLE AS SOON AS THE DRIVER CAN SAFELY DO SO, AND NECESSARY REPAIRS SHOULD BE MADE BEFORE THE VEHICLE IS PUT BACK IN SERVICE.

II. FURTHER ACTION REQUIRED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE:

After performing the necessary verifications and any necessary adjustments as set forth above in Section I, MCI recommends that owners of affected vehicles have the procedures set forth in Sections 4.4 and 4.5 (which require specialized tools) performed as soon as possible.


March 25, 2019

 

IMPORTANT SAFETY RECALL

This notice applies to your vehicle(s) [«UNIT»]

 

«NAME»
ATTENTION:  TECH SERVICE DEPT/MAINT
«POLK_ADDRESS»
«CITY», «ST» «ZIP_»
USA

 

SUBJECT: SAFETY RECALL:  E & J COACH STEERING

Ref.:
NHTSA # 19V-027
Transport Canada # 2019-006
MCI Service Bulletin 469

 

Attention Owner:

This notice is sent to you in accordance with the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act and the Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Act.

Motor Coach Industries is sending this initial notification letter advising that it has filed a safety recall due to the potential loss of steering control on E and certain J coach models if certain required maintenance has not been properly performed.  The exact cause is still under investigation, but MCI believes that the loss of steering control may occur if the vehicle does not have positive caster for the tag axle, and the vehicle has low hydraulic pressure in the rear axle steering system (RAS).  The combination of these two circumstances may allow the tag axle to go into a shimmy under certain road inputs, which may result in the vehicle’s steering system to lock until the vehicle is stopped.  MCI’s investigation to date indicates that the above vehicle conditions (improper caster angle and low hydraulic pressure) are due to the failure to perform proper maintenance on the trailing axle alignment and rear axle steering system.  After MCI has completed its investigation in this matter MCI will issue a further communication to you.  In the interim, please review the information in the enclosed Service Bulletin 469.

 

MCI records indicate that you are the owner or operator of the following vehicle(s) included in this recall:

«UNIT»

 

MCI strongly urges you to perform, or have performed by MCI or other qualified technicians, the inspection and any necessary repair procedures set forth in the enclosed Service Bulletin 469 with respect to your affected vehicle(s).

You may contact the MCI Customer Service Line at 1-800-241-2947 if you have any questions about this recall campaign or wish to make arrangements to have your vehicle(s) repaired at an authorized MCI service center.

After contacting MCI Customer Service, if you are still unable to have the safety defect remedied  you may submit a complaint:

 

For US customers:

You may submit a written complaint to the Administrator, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20590, or call 888 327-4236 (TTY: 800-424-9153), or go to http://www.safercar.gov if remedy difficulties exist.

 

For Canadian customers:

Please contact our customer service at 1-800-241-2947, or for additional information about the recall, you can contact Transport Canada at 1-800-333-0510.

If you are the lessor of the vehicle(s) identified above, Federal law requires that you forward this notice by first class mail to the most recent lessee(s) known to you, within ten days of your receipt of this notice.

If you have sold or otherwise transferred the vehicle(s) identified above, please contact the MCI Customer Service Line at 1-800-241-2947 with all of the information you have regarding the current owner/operator of the vehicle(s).

We regret the inconvenience this may cause you, but urge you to implement the inspection and any necessary repair procedures with respect to your vehicle(s) as soon as possible.

 

Sincerely,

 

Motor Coach Industries
Warranty Department

 

Enclosure:  MCI SB 469


49 Affected Products

Vehicles

MAKE MODEL YEAR
MCI 102EL3 1997-2013
MCI E4500 1997-2013
MCI J4500 2001-2015

 


6 Associated Documents

Recall Acknowledgement

RCAK-19V027-3335.pdf 245.609KB

RCAK-19V027-3335

 


Remedy Instructions and TSB

RCRIT-19V027-4616.pdf 452.105KB

RCRIT-19V027-4616

 


Defect Notice 573 Report

RCLRPT-19V027-8982.PDF 213.341KB

RCLRPT-19V027-8982

 


Remedy Instructions and TSB

RCRIT-19V027-2217.pdf 361.31KB

RCRIT-19V027-2217

 


Remedy Instructions and TSB

RCRIT-19V027-8306.pdf 263.236KB

RCRIT-19V027-8306

 


Interim Owner Notification Letter(Part 577)

RIONL-19V027-6489.pdf 168.992KB

RIONL-19V027-6489

 


Latest Recalls Documents

https://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/acms/cs/documentList.xhtml?docId=19V027&docType=RCL

 


 

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