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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The government has moved closer to recalling more than 1.2 million General Motors Corp. sport utility vehicles because their brake lights could fail.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Wednesday it is upgrading an investigation into brake light failures on 2002-04 Chevrolet Trailblazer, GMC Envoy and Oldsmobile Bravada SUVs as well as the 2004 Buick Rainier. Such upgrades often precede vehicle recalls.
GM and NHTSA have received 687 complaints that rear brake lights didn't come on when the driver pressed the brake pedal. No injuries related to the defect have been reported. GM investigated and found that heat from the bulb could deform the light socket and make the bulb inoperable.
GM has corrected the condition in vehicles made after October 2003. NHTSA said the company also alerted customers that dealers would replace their bulbs for free if they noticed they weren't working, but there has been no official recall.
GM has had a spate of costly recalls this year involving several million vehicles. The world's No. 1 automaker cited higher recall costs as a drag on its second-quarter financial results, released last month, but GM still earned $1.34 billion in the April-June quarter, up from $901 million a year ago.
(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)