Detroit, Michigan - Spiders have forced Suzuki to recall more than 19 000 mid-sized cars in the United States. Yes, you read right - spiders.
Suzuki says spider webs can clog a fuel vapour vent hose in some Kizashi sedans made between 2010 and 2013, blocking the air flow into the fuel-tank that replaces fuel used by the engine. If that happens, it can stop the engine or cause the fuel tank to deform, causing cracks, fuel leaks and possible fires.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Adminstration recall was prompted by seven reports of the problem.
Suzuki says, however, in documents filed with safety regulators, that the problem hasn't caused any accidents or injuries in the US.
Fortunately, the cure is quick and simple; service centres will replace the vent line with one that has a filter on the end; owners will be notified this month. According to Suzuki SA, local arachnids don’t seem to have a taste for octane; no cases of web-induced trauma have been reported in South Africa.
This is not the the first time American spiders (which seem to have some peculiar habitat preferences) have been the cause of safety recalls; in March 2011, 52 000 Mazda6 models were recalled for exactly the same problem.