American Honda Motor Co. recently discovered an issue with crankcases installed on specific 2023 Rebel 300 units. The defect springs from paint misapplied to the inner surface of the crankcase’s press-fit plug hole. While the treatment holds up at a standstill, once the engine temperature rises, the paint softens. In turn, the crankcase plug could slip out of the hole, potentially leading to an oil leak.

Honda states that the resulting leak could spray “onto the exhaust pipe and/or adhere to the rear tire while the motorcycle is in operation, increasing the risk of a fire, crash, or injury.” With such a catastrophic possibility, Big Red officially notified the United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of the problem on Friday, April 14, 2023. The manufacturer attributes the faulty crankcase to an improper production sequence followed by a supplier, and Honda will address the issue with a wide-ranging recall.

The resulting recall impacts 1,461 2023 Rebel 300 units produced between September 15 and November 17, 2022. The OEM doesn’t state the VIN number range involved in the recall, but owners can contact Honda customer service at 1-800-784-1870 (recall code KP2) for more information. Customers can also reach out to NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153) or visit the agency’s website for full details.

Honda will begin mailing owner notification letters on June 5, 2023. However, given the gravity of the situation, owners of 2023 Honda Rebels that fall within the production dates (previously stated) may choose to contact their local dealer before operating the vehicle again. Once inspected by Honda service departments for eligibility, dealers will replace the right crankcase (PN 11300-K0A-EB00) cover free of charge.

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