DETROIT — U.S. auto safety regulators are investigating complaints from Honda Civic drivers that their steering can stick, causing a momentary increase in effort and increasing the risk of a crash.
The probe by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration covers an estimated 238,000 Civics from the 2022 and 2023 model years.
The agency says it has 145 complaints about the problem, which happens mostly at highway speeds. The complaints came over the past 11 months and occurred mostly on vehicles with low miles.
An increase in steering effort can cause an overreaction or inability to avoid a road hazard, the agency said in documents posted Tuesday on its website.
NHTSA has no reports of crashes or injuries from the problem.
The agency will determine how many vehicles are affected and how severe the problem is. A recall is possible.
Honda said that it will cooperate with the investigation, which is in its early stages and may not lead to a recall. The company also is doing an internal review.
The company says most of the Civics should be under warranty, and that if any owner feels something is not right, they should contact their dealer.
Last week, Honda announced it would be recalling a half-million vehicles in the U.S. and Canada because the front seat belts may not latch properly.
The recall covers some of the automaker's top-selling models including the 2017 through 2020 CR-V, the 2018 and 2019 Accord, the 2018 through 2020 Odyssey and the 2019 Insight. Also included is the Acura RDX from the 2019 and 2020 model years.