CHOICE membership

Vehicle Recalls as Practiced


After asking this question, I discovered the answer:

Unfortunately, this is an incredibly clunky/clumsy system. It appears to list all product recalls going back to 1986! While one can browse by year and product category, and search for a specific recall (if you know about it), the ‘Transport’ category alone has 3,980 entries! Fortunately you can break this down further into (e.g.) 2,419 cars, 179 Holden, 15 Alfa Romeo (or 207 ‘other brands’*) recalls - but then in the middle of the list of brands is another sub-heading for ‘Parts and accessories’! Who would have thought to find that there, and why aren’t they listed under each affected car brand?

*Which includes “Toyota Motor Corporation Australia Limited - Lexus…”, just to confuse the reader. Cars also apparently include trucks.

So I repeat my call upon @BrendanMays and Choice to be seeking improvements on this current user-unfriendly melange.


In theory, the manufacturer needs to contact consumers in the case of a recall, but it’s not always that simple. We attempt to help clarify things for consumers as we have done with the recent Takata ‘future recall’, but we agree a better user friendly system would help. I’ve also noticed there can be some disparity between what’s happening at the top level of an organisation and the info consumers receive at the shopfront.

Thanks for raising the issue and for the suggestion, I’ll be sure to highlight it with my colleagues.


I agree, the FCAI is very powerful, but fortunately the Auto Aftermarket Associations have also been campaigning successfully for Choice of Repairer and mandatory sharing of technical service and repair information (similar to the US Massachusetts Law). Last week both the Labor and Liberal Parties confirmed it is now their Policy is that they will introduce a new Law because a mandatory solution to this issue is required. We are yet to see this new law - but if it works they way it does in the US, an independent repairer will have a scan tool that will identify a Technical Service Bulletin (silent recall/known fault) and customers can take the car back to the dealer for a fix - at no cost. This will go a long way to helping drivers like me, that prefer to use an independent repairer.


Yes, it’s probably second only to housing. With nearly a million new vehicle sales each year. Add in the value of repairs and maintenance, loans and financing costs, fuel, second hand sales, insurance, rego tolls etc.

The nation probably spends an even $100 billion a year.

The MTAA stated in Aug 2017 a $37b value for their share and 380,000 directly involved employees.
[MTAA Aust Auto Industry]

There is an equally sized sector building and repairing our roads, plus policing costs.

This makes the industry a force few might challenge. While Choice has no fears here the state based motoring organisations are like kittens pandering to the industry.

That includes the NRMA, RACQ etc. Look at any of their publications or web sites to see for your self. They are not leading the charge on recalls and certainly not outwardly lobbying for changes by the manufacturers or brand agents.

After trying to sell us insurance and travel products, lame vehicle reviews with niche recommendations so no one looses what is left to read. Usually comment on the need for better and safer roads, and more government spending.

A call for change in how recalls are managed needs to also call for a change to how these motoring organisations are treated. If they are not stepping up to lobby the industry are they just another business with a vested interest in keeping the status quo?

I totally agree the recall system needs updating. Why can’t the govt pass out all recall notices provided to them by the importers agents to owners using the vehicle registration data base?


One reason is that Liberal minded governments attempt to do the minimum possible to reduce taxes and make everything possible into a user pays service as part of their underlying ideology. Another is that a segment of the politicians reign in any government agency from doing things that a private company can do, in the name of a level commercial playing field (think about the veracity of that one, especially public-private consortiums).

I suspect an enterprising person could start a company, pay governments for their databases and charge the manufacturers to manage campaigns/recalls. We have a world class company in Australia that provides service databases and software to many of the multinational car manufacturers. Wouldn’t adding campaign/recall management and expanding to the independents be an obvious addition since government seems reluctant?


Here is a handy and informative site that lists vehicle recalls, campaigns, and ‘troublesome thingys’ on Australian delivered vehicles.!content=recalls


Your hotlink is not working.


Works for me. Curious. Anyone else having a worry with it?


“Not Acceptable
An appropriate representation of the requested resource /reviews.php could not be found on this server.”


What could I write?


I just copied and pasted the link into Microsoft Edge (IE11) and it displays the same error message as Chrome does.


I typed “Australian Car Reviews” into the Google search bar and it works.


@fred123, I think it is something on your PC. I use Firefox and just validated a working link on Chrome, Edge, and Opera, none with any problem. Of course it could be something on my PC too, that makes it work :wink:

edit: link works fine on my two PC’s, w/Firefox, IE11, Edge, Opera, and Chrome.


I just tried your hotlink on our laptop using Chrome, both without and with logging onto the Choice Community, and had the same problem.

I also tried copying and pasting the link into Edge and had the same problem.

Very strange.


Doesn’t work for me either. does work, but when I go to any of the tabs, including the ‘recalls and faults’ tab, I get the
"Not Acceptable
An appropriate representation of the requested resource /reviews.php could not be found on this server."
I also tried the buyers’ guide for a vehicle, and it allowed me to select the fields, but fell over when it tried to use the buyers’ guide.


Thanks for clarifying where it goes bad. I was reading a few different vehicle recall histories when I started. Seems the web site is having a problem, not that the original link is bad :frowning:

This variation on the link seems to work?


Thanks. This link works. :slight_smile:

[It only seems to go back to about 2005/6 from the couple of vehicles I checked.]


Both links work for me…

A good website which I never knew existed.

Known vehicle issues are also interesting read. Wonder how these would be dealt with under the ACL as one could argue they are a design/manufacturing fault…and one may not have bought the vehicle knowing that they existed,


Your second hotlink works for me.


Great web resource. Two issues for my aging Ute listed both of which have not been dealt with within the original warranty period at dealer services. Another two that could be issues.

I still ask why the Giants that are motoring owners clubs,
who operate as not for profits,
with budgets that make Choice a minnow
are not at the forefront of providing this information on their web sites etc?

Part of the answer:
how many new vehicles are sold each year? At what average selling price?
how many dollars do dealers turnover in servicing and spare parts?
how many dollars is the after sales market for motor vehicles worth?
add in the value of the third party spares, servicing, tyres, batteries, road worthies?
any one for rego and insurance costs, and crash repairs?
And there is the cost of fuel?

Several hundred billion reasons?

I’m amazed the web link @TheBBG provided exists at all!