DETROIT, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Nissan Motor Co is recalling about 238,000 Altima sedans from the 2013 model year because a secondary hood latch may not hold, increasing the risk of a crash, U.S safety regulators and the company said on Friday.
Altima is the most popular Nissan model in North America, and through September accounted for 26 percent of the Nissan brand's U.S. sales.
About 219,000 of the recalled vehicles are in the United States, 10,000 in Canada, 5,000 in Mexico, 2,000 in South Korea, 1,000 in Puerto Rico and the rest scattered in Latin American and Asia.
"Nissan became aware of a small number of incidents in which the hood came open while the car was moving, causing damage to the car itself," Nissan said, but said there it is aware of no crashes or injuries related to the issue.
A report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said interference between the hood inner panel and the secondary latch lever, in combination with debris and corrosion, may cause the secondary hood latch to bind and remain in the unlatched position when the hood is closed.
If the primary latch is inadvertently released, and the secondary latch is not working, the hood could fly up while driving, increasing the risk of a crash.
Nissan dealers will modify the bend angle of the hood lever, and they will clean and lubricate the latch as necessary, NHTSA said. (Reporting by Bernie Woodall; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)