There are more than 65,000 Land Rovers that can have their doors open accidentally due to a defectiv door latch. Or, in some cases, fail to close at all. The problem was first recalled in 2015, but an investigation was opened two years later to look into the recall's effectiveness.
Land Rover started equipping some of its vehicles with a Unilatch Keyless Vehicle entry system in 2015. The system either has control logic or short circuiting issues when controlling the release levers, never allowing the doors to latch even though they appear to be properly closed.
Door Latch Recall and Follow-Up Investigation
Through an internal investigation, Land Rover found problems in the electrical function of the keyless entry system. Short-circuits were turning the keyless entry motor into a brake, stopping (or slowing down) the keyless lever from returning to its “home” position. When this happens, the door may appear to be closed but it’s not properly latched shut.
Land Rover’s Initial Recall
In July of 2015, Land Rover recalled 65,000 SUVs because the doors were failing to latch in the primary or secondary closed positions.
To repair the problem, Land Rover dealers updated the keyless system software in certain vehicles manufactured up until March 9, 2015. This included the 2013-2016 Range Rover and 2014-2016 Range Rover Sport.
Investigation Into the Recall
Two years after the recall, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened an investigation into the recall’s effectiveness. The investigation was upgraded in 2018 as more complaints rolled in.
NHTSA received complaints from both owners with the upgraded software and owners left out of the orignal recall. Meanwhile, Land Rover discovered at least 43 additional complaints related to the door latches with 14 of those saying the doors opening while the car was in motion.