The country’s quality watchdog has notified Volkswagen AG that it needs to show technical documentation for a recall that spanned across 600,000 cars and created a wave of protests from disgruntled owners.
The quality regulator is asking for the first time an automaker to do so, under a new law that mandates the introduction of timely safety campaigns – akin to the procedures in Europe or the United States. The General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine notified VW – the largest foreign automaker (in terms of local sales) operating in China – to provide the documents pertaining to its October 17 recall of New Sagitar and Beetle vehicles, according to a statement released recently on the regulator’s website.
China is in the process of increasing scrutiny over auto safety issues and has introduced since January 1st 2013 a new law that allows the government to order investigations and impose punitive actions on manufacturers that don’t issue a recall campaign in a timely manner. Volkswagen, for example, started the recall two months after the regulator began a probe into the many complaints about the vehicles coming up with broken rear suspension axles. The regulators across the world aim to increase oversight over automakers to ensure recalls don’t escalate into global safety crises, such as the one that Japan’s Takata Corporation has to deal with.