2011 Harley Davidson recall: Brake problem found

By Gary Johnson - Oct 24, 2011

Most auto recalls affect various cars and trucks, but sometimes they can also come in the two wheeled variety as well. Today we can tell you of a 2011 Harley Davidson recall with a brake problem being found.

The motorcycle manufacturer is recalling around 308,000 of its models to fix a problem with a switch that may result in the failure of the brake lights. The Associated press is reporting the rear brakes could even fail themselves. Harley Davidson filed some documents last week with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about the problem.

Brake light switches could be exposed to excessive heat from the vehicles exhaust system, which in turn can lead to the brake lights to fail. The issue can also lead to fluid leaks that will result in complete failure of the rear brakes. It is affecting the Touring, CVO Touring and Trike models from the 2009 through to the 2012 model years.

The affected models were manufactured between June 6th 2008 through to September 16th 2011. Harley Davidson has said it will alert owners about the recall, and its dealers will install a new brake light switch free of charge.

There are around 251,000 affected motorcycles in the US alone, with the rest in other countries. Surprisingly the problem was first noticed by Harley in June 2010 when a Trike model suffered failure of its rear brakes. It began looking into the problem a month later when a crash was reported and was caused by brake failure.

This is the only reported crash that Harley is aware of so far, and the company expects the issue to cost it around $10 or $12 million. Back in February the company had to issue a smaller recall for its Softail model.

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  • Charlie Layne

    I had this happen to me in Indiana. The rear brake peddle was fine then the next try it went to the bottom with no brakes, the date for this was 7/12/10. I have an 09 road glide purchased new in may of 09. The problem was found by the service manager at the Hoosier HD. And yes it was the rear brake light switch had a small leak pass the plastic and the screw in base that let air into the line.