Nissan Recalls Nearly 100,000 SUVs to Fix Weird Issue With the Key

Nissan’s latest recall is an eye-opener not only because of the number of units involved but also due to the weird nature of the safety issue that needs to be addressed.

Affected models include the 2014-2020 Nissan Rogue and 2017-2022 Qashqai in “S” trim. Around 96,900 are found in Canada. These model years cover the entire previous generation of the former and the current generation of the latter.

The vehicles we’re talking about all came with a jackknife-type folding key, and apparently the key blade may not stay locked in the fully extended (open) position over time. What’s the problem with that? Well, according to the recall notice posted by Transport Canada, “if you drive the vehicle with the key in the partially folded position, you could bump the ignition key and turn the engine off.”

You have to admit this sounds pretty unlikely. Of course, if the engine does turn off while driving, you would experience a sudden loss of engine power, power steering and power brakes. Also, the airbags would not deploy in a crash.

Photo: Michel Deslauriers

Nissan will notify owners by mail in the coming weeks, stressing the need to ensure that the key is fully extended before driving and not to attach any accessories to the key fob that could add weight to it.

As an interim repair, dealers will install a fastener in the key slot to prevent the key from folding. Another appointment will be required when a permanent fix becomes available, namely a spacer inserted into the slot of the key fob that will stop if from collapsing.

The previous recall affecting the old Nissan Rogue (42,347 units in Canada) was much more serious. As we previously reported, water could leak into the electrical connections in the driver's footwell, which could cause problems with various electrical systems and lead to a short circuit.

Photo: Jeremy Alan Glover

Given the risk of a fire, Nissan advises owners to park their Rogue outdoors and away from other vehicles or structures until the recall repairs have been completed. Dealers will replace the wiring harness connector on the dash side if necessary and also apply grease to the connector to prevent water intrusion.

If you’re in the market for a used Nissan Rogue, make sure all applicable recalls have been addressed (there are quite a few). We think it’s still a good SUV for families due to its spacious and comfortable interior.

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