GM CEO Mary Barra
Carlos Osorio

A faulty, 57-cent ignition switch in Chevrolet Cobalts and Saturn Ions made by General Motors could, when jarred, shut off the engine as well as vital systems that depend on engine power, including steering, brakes and air bags, according to these articles. Delphi Automotive officials testified before Congress about the deadly defect and said the switches were approved by GM even though they apparently did not meet specifications for torque. Later, engineers were leery of trying to raise the torque because of the delicacy of the mechanism, with any change likely to introduce other problems.

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