GMC Acadia Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, I am new to this forum. Hopefully someone will have some advise for me. Last Tuesday, August 20, 2019, I was driving my wife's 2017 Acadia All Terrian from home to the airport. This is an approximate 2 hour drive. Prior to leaving I checked the diagnostics as usual. The voltage was at 12.7. This seemed low to me but since I am not a vehicle technician or mechanic it did not set off any alarms. While driving I did get a weird feeling that something might be wrong with the steering. After all the vehicle has warnings for everything, I thought. About an hour and 10 minutes into the trip I went to the left lane to avoid something on the interstate. Prior to moving back into the right lane the vehicle suddenly took control and jerked right. Panic sounds came from the back seat and my wife asked me what happened? All I could say was "I have no idea". I slowed down considerably for the next 45 minutes trying to figure out if it was something I had done. The steering in this vehicle is quite sensitive which makes it easy to drive. Once at the hotel I considered my options. The next morning I called the dealership and asked them about what could have happened and if they had heard of an incident like this before. My service advisor also asked if it had happened since to which I replied "No". They recommended on my way back home I stop in and let them look at it. They also said if I was concerned with driving the vehicle to have it checked out by a local GMC dealership (We were an hour away). I chose to take it to the folks I know and trust so nursed the vehicle back to the dealership. After checking the Acadia the technician stated that the voltage had dropped to low and it was either the battery or the alternator. Imagine my surprise when I asked him if this could cause the Acadia to suddenly take control of the steering...his reply was yes. I then asked him why there was no warning on the idiot panel (that's what I call it) and he stated the warning for this incident was below the threshold of it happening. What????? When I asked the service writer about it she stated that it was not within the control of the dealership but I could contact GMC which I did. The problem has been escalated and I am working with an advisor. As he stated Safety is one of GMC's biggest concerns. When I asked him to put this, as well as the incident into an email and send it to me his answer was no he could not. At that point I stated that I may have to pursue other avenues. His reply was if you are going to contact a lawyer he could not longer talk to me. I would have to be referred to the legal department. I explained that was not my intent. But I also emphasized that this was very concerning to me. My wife drives this vehicle and as she said, after the incident, she would have panicked and had no idea what could have happened. The week prior she had taken the same route we were on at the time of the phantom vehicle take over. My concern is if I had been passing a Truck or another Vehicle this situation could have had major consequences. I will keep you posted as to what GMC's fixes are. I am just posting to let you know that stuff happens and some of this stuff could be deadly. I am hoping the company will stick to it's policy of safety first and resolve the problem. I am also very concerned with my wife ever taking this vehicle out of town again.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
18,300 Posts
Welcome to the forum.
We'll be interested in knowing how things turn out for you. You're first on the forum to post about a problem with the electric power steering.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,176 Posts
Hi, I am new to this forum. Hopefully someone will have some advise for me. Last Tuesday, August 20, 2019, I was driving my wife's 2017 Acadia All Terrian from home to the airport. This is an approximate 2 hour drive.

Prior to leaving I checked the diagnostics as usual. The voltage was at 12.7. This seemed low to me but since I am not a vehicle technician or mechanic it did not set off any alarms. While driving I did get a weird feeling that something might be wrong with the steering. After all the vehicle has warnings for everything, I thought.

About an hour and 10 minutes into the trip I went to the left lane to avoid something on the interstate. Prior to moving back into the right lane the vehicle suddenly took control and jerked right. Panic sounds came from the back seat and my wife asked me what happened? All I could say was "I have no idea". I slowed down considerably for the next 45 minutes trying to figure out if it was something I had done. The steering in this vehicle is quite sensitive which makes it easy to drive.

Once at the hotel I considered my options. The next morning I called the dealership and asked them about what could have happened and if they had heard of an incident like this before. My service advisor also asked if it had happened since to which I replied "No". They recommended on my way back home I stop in and let them look at it. They also said if I was concerned with driving the vehicle to have it checked out by a local GMC dealership (We were an hour away).

I chose to take it to the folks I know and trust so nursed the vehicle back to the dealership. After checking the Acadia the technician stated that the voltage had dropped to low and it was either the battery or the alternator. Imagine my surprise when I asked him if this could cause the Acadia to suddenly take control of the steering...his reply was yes. I then asked him why there was no warning on the idiot panel (that's what I call it) and he stated the warning for this incident was below the threshold of it happening. What????? When I asked the service writer about it she stated that it was not within the control of the dealership but I could contact GMC which I did.

The problem has been escalated and I am working with an advisor. As he stated Safety is one of GMC's biggest concerns. When I asked him to put this, as well as the incident into an email and send it to me his answer was no he could not. At that point I stated that I may have to pursue other avenues. His reply was if you are going to contact a lawyer he could not longer talk to me. I would have to be referred to the legal department.

I explained that was not my intent. But I also emphasized that this was very concerning to me. My wife drives this vehicle and as she said, after the incident, she would have panicked and had no idea what could have happened. The week prior she had taken the same route we were on at the time of the phantom vehicle take over. My concern is if I had been passing a Truck or another Vehicle this situation could have had major consequences. I will keep you posted as to what GMC's fixes are. I am just posting to let you know that stuff happens and some of this stuff could be deadly. I am hoping the company will stick to it's policy of safety first and resolve the problem. I am also very concerned with my wife ever taking this vehicle out of town again.
I broke this horrendous paragraph up so that hopefully people will be able to read it.

If I am reading this correctly it was a one time incident that has not had a recurrence???

George
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
I appreciate your help GeorgeC. I am not an English major and at 65 probably will not become one so please forgive me for my horrendous paragraph. I did not even think about the ease of reading. I was more concerned with the safety of other vehicle owners. This issue has me very upset as this is my wife's vehicle. As I said in the summary she admitted she would have panicked. Yes, this is a one-time incident but then again I have only driven the vehicle for 80 miles since it happened and I was very careful at that. The Acadia only has 15,300 miles on it and it was purchased new. This is not only scary for me but I worry if another vehicle could experience the same condition under different circumstances. Maybe someone passing me?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Let me add one thing to this discussion. I felt that, maybe, if I took the vehicle out of two-wheel drive and placed it into all-wheel or four-wheel it might give me more control of the vehicle. The tech working with the car stated that since the alternator was not charging properly the Acadia would not switch into either.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
329 Posts
Let me add one thing to this discussion. I felt that, maybe, if I took the vehicle out of two-wheel drive and placed it into all-wheel or four-wheel it might give me more control of the vehicle. The tech working with the car stated that since the alternator was not charging properly the Acadia would not switch into either.
Does your vehicle have "Lane Keep Assist" (LKA)? That feature can "gently turn the steering wheel" to avoid a crash due to "unintentional lane departures". Did you casually drift in and out of the left lane (without using your turn signals)?

Not accusing you of anything here, just suggesting that maybe the LKA could be malfunctioning. LKA can malfunction (or be fooled) by poor weather or "visibility" (dirt, snow, or ice on the windshield), or the sun shining directly into the camera sensors (on the windshield ahead of the rear view mirror).

You can turn LKA OFF via a switch on the 'center stack'. The cluster icon is a "car with dashed road lines to either side".
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
18,300 Posts
The owner's manual contains many caveats about when LKA operates in an unexpected way. Those conditions shouldn't be construed as "malfunctions" of the system - they're more like the nature of it. The manual also states LKA is not supposed to respond when it senses any active steering input from the driver. Repetitive engagement of LKA while actively steering would be considered a malfunction.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thank You speleos. We do not have LKA. The swerve the vehicle made was similar to a rear right tire blowing out. It was sudden and lasted about a second.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
18,300 Posts
Thank You speleos. We do not have LKA. The swerve the vehicle made was similar to a rear right tire blowing out. It was sudden and lasted about a second.
Maybe you ran over something on the road, or drove though a pavement deviation that you didn't see. Based on all the information, worries about the car's safety don't seem to be justified.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
speleos the technician at the dealership stated that the alternator was bad and that it caused a voltage drop which was what caused the vehicle to swerve right. They are currently waiting to receive a new alternator and install it. I thought the same thing as you until the service tech verified it was a vehicle problem.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
18,300 Posts
I can understand where a drop in electrical power could cause loss of power steering assist, but not when it would cause the car to steer itself. That doesn't make any sense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
That is all the technician has told me so far speleos. Hopefully, when I finally get the Acadia back I will know more. I do know the voltage was so low that it would not let me shift into another drive mode such as all-wheel or four-wheel drive. Guess when the voltage drops below, in this case, thirteen your ability to change the drive mode becomes ineffective.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Hi Speleos, I have been following the Acadia Forum comments for the past year or more. I have a 2013 Acadia Denali AWD. After my 3 year warranty ran out, I needed A/C replacement and an Oil Pan Engine Leak repaired. All thankfully covered under an extended warranty. I only have 26K miles on my vehicle, but it is turning 7 years old. When I think about replacing my 2013 with a brand new Acadia, it bothers me after reading this thread and so many others. It kind of reminds me of the 1st generation of the Acadia and their issues until around the 2013 was updated. Luck to All.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
About this Discussion
15 Replies
6 Participants
generalstuart1
GMC Acadia Forum
Join our Acadia Forum community where enthusiasts discuss mods and troubleshooting for the GMC Acadia and Denali Crossover SUV.
Full Forum Listing
Top