GM Appoints New Safety Chief Amid Recalls
General Motors has appointed a new safety chief in the wake of its recall of more than 3.1 million vehicles over the last two months.
Chief executive Mary Barra said Jeff Boyer, an engineer with 40 years' experience, would be in charge of recalls and other safety issues, and would report directly to senior management and the board.
"If there are any obstacles in his way, Jeff has the authority to clear them," Ms Barra said.
"If he needs any additional resources, he will get them."
The newly minted position follows the announcement that GM was recalling an additional 1.5 million vehicles amid concerns of a faulty ignition switch.
In a video message to GM employees Ms Barra said the company had fallen short in catching a safety glitch linked to 12 deaths.
"Something went wrong with our process in this instance, and terrible things happened," she said.
Ms Barra told employees GM was undergoing an "intense review" of its recall procedure, and its system would change.
In the meantime, the company will co-operate fully with government investigators, she added.
"The bottom line is, we will get better as a result of this tragic situation if we seize the opportunity," she said.
Ms Barra apologised for the deaths linked to the faulty ignition switch that can cause an engine to shut down unexpectedly and cause power steering and air bags to fail.
In the last two months, GM has recalled more than 3.1 million vehicles in the US and other markets.
The actions started with last month's recall of more than 1.6 million vehicles for the faulty switches.
The latest recalls cover airbag wiring harnesses, brake parts and other components across several models.
Ms Barra said the company was changing how it handles defect investigations and recalls.
GM expects to spend approximately $300m (£180m) in the first quarter to repair the vehicles in the new recalls as well as the vehicles covered by the other recalls.