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Latest News...

Reminder about rusty floorpans


7 Aug 2007


 

In the late 1990s, it became apparent that some Nissan vehicles were vulnerable to rust in the rear floorpan.

The problem affects Nissan vehicles where the rear floorpan assembly consists of a two-layer (double-skin) panel, such as Nissan Terranos and Mistrals.

The primary safety concern is that corrosion in the rear floorpan area may affect the rear lower seatbelt anchorage points in the case of the Terrano, and the rear lower seatbelt anchorages and seat anchorages in the case of the Mistral.

Originally, Land Transport NZ stated that where corrosion was found in such a vehicle, the floorpan had to be replaced.

Affected Terrano models, as advised by the Imported Motor Vehicle Dealers Association, are:

  • N-WBYD21 1986-87
  • Q-WBYD21 1988-
  • E-WHYD21 1987-1993
  • S-VBYD21 1989-
  • N-VBYD21 1986-89
  • Y-LBYD21 1993-95
  • Y-WBYD21 1993-95
  • Q-WBYD21 1989-93

Affected Mistral models, as advised by the Imported Motor Vehicle Dealers Association, are:

  • R20 5-door, all models.


 

This is a costly and extensive process, so the Low Volume Vehicle Technical Association (LVVTA) developed an alternative method of reinforcing the seatbelt anchorage system by fitting a rear floor load-bar.

The LVVTA Rear floor load-bar seatbelt anchorage reinforcement system is only available for Nissan Mistral R20 5-door, or Nissan Terrano D21 vehicles.

A third alternative is to decommission the rear seating positions by removing the rear seats and seatbelts and plugging the mounting holes.

The rear seat must be lifted to examine the area thoroughly. Any carpet and sound insulating material covering the panel that the seats or seatbelt anchorages are mounted on must be pulled back far enough to expose the entire area under the seat, and in the case of the Mistral, the wheel-arches.

Be aware that any corrosion damage will be significantly more extensive than is externally apparent. Indicators of more extensive corrosion may include:

  • Bubbling of the paint
  • Surface irregularities in the top floor skin
  • A paint patch repair that has rust around it
  • Separation of the reinforcement panel and the top skin
  • Discoloration or rust stains at the edges of the reinforcement panel
  • Rust holes

If any corrosion is detected, the integrity of the seat and seatbelt anchorages is considered to be at risk, and the vehicle will not pass WoF inspection.

When considering options for the vehicle operator, remember the LVVTA rear floor load-bar seatbelt anchorage reinforcement system is a practical alternative for the repair of corroded floor-pans of model D21 Nissan Terranos or Nissan Mistral R20 5-door vehicles if the operator wants to retain the seating positions.

For information about this seatbelt anchorage modification, see www.lvvta.org.nz.

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