Rivian is recalling a small number of R1T electric pickup trucks and R1S electric SUVs because of an issue that affects how well the front seatbelts are affixed to the B-pillar.
The automaker will have to perform repairs on 198 R1Ts built between January 28 and August 8, 2022, as well as nine R1Ss produced between the same dates. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) documents, the problem affects 99 percent of the 207 vehicles included in this recall.
The problem stems from the bolt in the seatbelt height adjuster for the driver and/or front seat passenger, which may have been cross threaded during the manufacturing process. The problem was first discovered on July 12, when the height adjuster on a vehicle was found not to be adequately affixed to the B-pillar at the plant.
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Indeed, if the bolt is cross threaded, it may not effectively anchor the seatbelt over the driver or passenger’s shoulder. That’s a pretty major concern in an accident, when the seatbelt becomes a major component of a vehicle’s safety equipment.
According to the IIHS, almost half of the drivers and front seat passengers killed in automotive accidents in 2019 were not wearing their seatbelt. That’s despite the vast majority of Americans wearing seatbelts when they drive, which points to the life-saving potential of a properly working seatbelt.
Fortunately, Rivian is not aware of any accident or injuries related to this recall. The automaker will get in touch with owners starting on October 14, and will inspect height adjusters, replacing the bolts where necessary to ensure that the belt is properly anchored to the B-pillar.
Vehicles produced after August 8, meanwhile, were and will not be produced with the suspect seatbelt assembly anchorage installation, meaning that they should not exhibit this fault.