Mitsubishi Lancer, Outlander Recall Issued Due to Electrical Problems

Almost 54,000 Mitsubishi Lancer and Outlander vehicles have been recalled due to faulty electrical control units, which may disable the head lights, tail lights, and windshield wipers while the vehicle is being operated, posing a potential crash hazard. 

The Mitsubishi Lancer and Outlander recall was announced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on May 7, following a six-year internal investigation that has lead the auto maker to believe inappropriate manufacturing may cause insufficient adhesion between the lead frame and the condenser that could result in increased electrical resistance, posing intermittent failure of the components powered by the electronic control unit. To date, Mitsubishi has not received any reports of injuries or accidents related to the problem.

The affected vehicles are equipped with an ETACS Electronic Control Unit (ECU) which controls the function of the headlights, tail lights and the windshield wipers. Certain vehicles may have encountered a manufacturing error during the assembly process, which could lead to too much electrical resistance on these functions. In the event consumers lose power of these essential operating functions, occupants could become more prone to accidents, especially at night time or during inclement weather.

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The vehicles included in the recall are certain model year 2009-2010 Mitsubishi Lancer vehicles manufactured January 12, 2009, to July 6, 2010, 2009-2010 Outlander vehicles manufactured January 12, 2009, to August 27, 2010, 2010 Lancer Sportback vehicles manufactured June 17, 2009, to June 8, 2010, and 2010 Lancer Evolution vehicles manufactured July 14, 2009, to August 4, 2010.

Mitsubishi recorded its first warranty claim in September 2009, when an owner in Japan reported the engine could not be started. This report initiated what would become a six year investigation that eventually led to Mitsubishi Motors conducting a field action on April 9, and ordered Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. to conduct a safety recall.

Mitsubishi announced second recall on May 11, that will include approximately 77,000 2011 MY Lancer, 2010 through 2011 MY Lancer Evolution, 2010 through 2011 MY Lancer Sportback, 2009 through 2011 MY Outlander, and 2011 Outlander Sport vehicles built February 10, 2009 to June 22, 2011 due to front blower motors being inadequately placed during the manufacturing process. Mitsubishi has identified situations where the shaft and bearing inside the motor were not centered properly causing them to wear out prematurely, ultimately causing the blowers to fail.

Mitsubishi has not yet announced when the company will begin recall repairs but has reported to the NHTSA a defect notice explaining the issue will be mailed to owners with instructions on how to schedule an appointment at a local dealer to have the ECU replaced free of charge. Owners with further questions may contact Mitsubishi customer service at 1-888-648-7820 and reference the recall number SR-15-002 for the Lancer and Outlander ECU recall or SR-15-002 for the front blower motor recall.

Image Credit: Image via IgorGolovniov / Shutterstock.com

9 Comments

  • KennethJuly 27, 2022 at 7:13 pm

    Having same problem with our 2018 mitsubushi outlander sport,as well is now affecting the engine..we are in ny on vac.,from sc

  • LioDecember 1, 2019 at 7:06 am

    I had exactly the same problem: Mitsubishi Lancer 2011 was parked in the evening at the parking spot. On the next day in the morning car did not start for no reason. Mitsubishi dealer's intensive Diagnostic found that ETACS ECU failure was a cause of faulty communication wire contacts and no communication signal going to main ECU. After communication wire contacts were cleaned up, car engine start[Show More]I had exactly the same problem: Mitsubishi Lancer 2011 was parked in the evening at the parking spot. On the next day in the morning car did not start for no reason. Mitsubishi dealer's intensive Diagnostic found that ETACS ECU failure was a cause of faulty communication wire contacts and no communication signal going to main ECU. After communication wire contacts were cleaned up, car engine started. Than was also found that a cooling fan began to run continuously after this incident even when car was shut off. Problem was solved only after ETACS ECU was replaced with a new one. Dealer said that there is not recall on my car VIN, even though other 77,000 Mitsubishi Lancer 2011 were recalled with exactly the same ETACS ECU failure.

  • LioNovember 28, 2019 at 9:07 pm

    Have the same issue with ETACS Electronic Control Unit (ECU) like those 77,000 Lancer 2011 recalls, but Mitsubishi saying that my VIN is not included in recall. Seems that they are trying to hide a problem with a wider number of cars. It is scary to drive Mitsubishi cars after all.

  • TracyJune 20, 2018 at 6:01 am

    My 2007 Outlander has been without working windshield wipers since 160k...after replacing BOTH, front, original, Mitsubishi coil springs that SNAPPED in two (thank God this happened as I was pulling onto the street from my driveway!), and after replacing the alternator and rotors all around. This car has been nothing but a money pit! Mitsubishi REFUSES to do anything! I was told the coil springs "[Show More]My 2007 Outlander has been without working windshield wipers since 160k...after replacing BOTH, front, original, Mitsubishi coil springs that SNAPPED in two (thank God this happened as I was pulling onto the street from my driveway!), and after replacing the alternator and rotors all around. This car has been nothing but a money pit! Mitsubishi REFUSES to do anything! I was told the coil springs "barely missed the recall", and I was told by Mitsubishi that "the failed ETACS system was (my) problem to deal with, as (they're) not responsible." The rep was beyond nasty and rude! It's going to cost me at least $1,000 to replace the ETACS. The dealership tech told me the failure with the ETACS system is a common issue in models dating back to 2006; especially in 2007 to 2011 models. "(They) replace them a lot." Since I can't afford to repair the ETACS system, I religiously apply Rain-X often and avoid driving in heavy downpours. If I could afford it, I'd sue them!!

  • TanishaNovember 22, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    My 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander is not starting. Every light imaginable comes on it just won't connect. Sounds like an electronic failure to me. Giving it gas and no joy. I am frustrated with Orange Park Mitsubishi's lack of urgency, refusal to tow, and lackadaisical customer service to find out why their brand new car is not starting. I am livid that I asked the repair expert if this was a common pr[Show More]My 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander is not starting. Every light imaginable comes on it just won't connect. Sounds like an electronic failure to me. Giving it gas and no joy. I am frustrated with Orange Park Mitsubishi's lack of urgency, refusal to tow, and lackadaisical customer service to find out why their brand new car is not starting. I am livid that I asked the repair expert if this was a common problem today and she said, "No!" I feel completely hustled and will explore all my legal options. Buying a new car should mean I avoid the hassle of loosing productivity for days due to mechanical failures. Unfortunately, I feel regret about trusting Mitsubishi last year.

  • WildaJuly 28, 2016 at 8:42 pm

    Was informed by a Mitsubishi dealership, that the recall was for last year, and my 2009 Mitsubishi is not on list for a recall when they checked my vin #

  • MarionJuly 20, 2016 at 8:03 pm

    Problem with 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport. Every light possible showed up on dashboard. First they thought it was my battery because it would not start, and after replacing it still acted up. Now they tell me it is the Etacs that needs replacing. Only have 1800 miles.

  • IrmaJuly 5, 2016 at 3:05 pm

    I'm having similar issues with my 2014 Mitsubishi Lancer.

  • willieMay 3, 2016 at 10:57 pm

    Im having simlar issues with my mitisubishi outlander

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