The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a recall notice for a number of 2014-2015 model-year Victory motorcycles owing to a potential crankcase issue. Included in the recall are the 2014 Victory Cross Country, Cross Country Eight Ball, Hammer Eight Ball, High Ball, Jackpot, Judge, Ness Cross Country, Vegas Eight Ball, Vision, Boardwalk and the 2015 Gunner. The 872 potentially affected units were manufactured between January 22, 2014 and April 25, 2014.
According to the defect notice submitted by Polaris Industries Inc., “Victory has determined that some crankcases may have been manufactured with insufficient clearance between the crankshaft and crankcases which can result in too little crankshaft endplay…Engines assembled using a faulty crankcase may unexpectedly seize. This could cause the vehicle operator to lose control, increasing the risk of a vehicle crash.”
To-date there have been no reports of engine failures from the public and Victory discovered the issue during quality control assessments on the production line. Procedure dictates that all engines be “started and ran at the end of the production line. These engines are not in chassis at this point and are attached to an engine run-up stand.” On March 26, 2014 one of the engines seized due to the aforementioned issue, and further investigation resulted in two additional engine failures in mid-April.
The defect notice goes on to conclude that “Victory’s investigation has determined that the vendor’s quality control measures had allowed some out-of-specification crankcases to be delivered to Victory.”
Victory has begun to notify owners of affected models and are asking that motorcycles included in the recall not be ridden until a dealer has conducted an inspection and made any necessary repairs. Victory has also issued a stop sale notification to its dealer network until the problem can be remedied.
Crankcase clearance will be fixed free of charge on motorcycles found to have the defect. Owners may contact Polaris at 1-888-704-5290 for more information. Owners may also go to www.safercar.gov
or call the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 for details. The NHTSA campaign number is 14V227000.