Image: Nissan Cube
Stan Honda  /  AFP - Getty Images file
A Nissan Cube on display at the New York International Auto Show. Nissan said Monday it is recalling 46,000 Cubes over possible fuel spillage problems.
updated 7/26/2010 4:55:19 PM ET 2010-07-26T20:55:19

Nissan is recalling 51,100 of its Cube hatchbacks in the United States and Canada because of possible problems with fuel spilling during rear end collisions.

In documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Nissan Motor Co. said Monday tests conducted by NHTSA safety regulators found more fuel spilled than federal standards allow. The spillage occurred during rear end crash tests at 50 miles per hour where the vehicle also spun onto its side.

Nissan said its own earlier tests did not show any fuel leakage, but it will issue a voluntary recall. It notified dealers last week and will contact owners on Aug. 30. Dealers will attach a special protector to prevent leaks.

There have been no injuries or incidents reported by drivers, according to Nissan.

The recall covers model year 2009 and 2010 Cubes made between Jan. 30, 2009 and July 30. It includes 45,700 in the United States and 5,400 in Canada. Cubes sold in Europe and Japan are not included because they use different parts.

A sporty four-door aimed at urban drivers, the boxy Cube was introduced in Asia before being sold in the U.S. last year. U.S. buyers have snapped up 15,530 through June this year, a 300 percent increase over the same period a year earlier.

Toyota reported a similar problem last month from NHTSA tests of a Lexus hybrid. The automaker also did not find problems in its own tests, but issued a recall anyway.

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