So, picture the scene: You spend over $30,000 on a brand spanking new 2016 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring with the Technology Package. For that money, you get some fancy LED headlights, taillights and daytime running lights as part of a $1,200 package, and you’re pleased as all get out to have a modern (at the time) and fully-loaded crossover.
Then, some time later, one of your DRLs starts going dim or fizzles out completely with no warning, and for no discernible reason. Several owners have complained at the issue, as it’s not cheap to fix. The light assemblies cost $600 per side to replace at dealer prices, and that’s just for the parts. On Tuesday, Mazda announced that it was recalling 36,761 examples of 2016 CX-5s with this issue.
More specifically, the problem has to do with the sealing gasket attached to the running light wiring harness. “Due to inappropriate material specification,” Mazda says, the gasket can release sulfur over time, corroding the LED circuit surrounding the DRL. When that happens, they may flicker or go out entirely, and the issue can affect one or both daytime running lights.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hasn’t published their report on the issue yet, but Mazda says accidents or injuries have been reported at this point. The defect can present a safety issue, though, if the DRLs are out and the headlights are off. In low-light conditions, such as right before dark (when the lights in the tech package can switch on automatically, if the driver sets them up to do so), pedestrians or other vehicles may not see the car as easily.
No timeline for repairs yet
In the announcement, Mazda did not lay out an exact course of action or a time frame on repairs. It’s reasonable to assume dealers will eventually replace the gaskets free of charge, and if the daytime running lights have actually gone out, they may replace the entire assembly as well. Concerned owners can contact their dealer to keep tabs on when replacement parts will be available.
Editor’s Note: I actually own a 2016 Mazda CX-5, one that I bought brand new in May 2016, so I’ve been sleeping with one eye open just waiting for this to happen on my own car. There’s no word on the recall from my end as a customer yet, but this Mazda CX-5 has seen four other recalls since 2016.