Feds reveal more models in Takata air bag recall
Automakers and federal officials on Thursday started announcing vehicles that are being added to a massive, highly publicized recall of air bags made by Takata Corp.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Ford Motor Co. and Honda Motor Co. were among the first to report expanded recalls, after the Japanese air bag manufacturer last week nearly doubled the number of affected vehicles to 33.8 million.
Fiat Chrysler is adding about 1.5 million vehicles to its previously announced recalls in the U.S. In total, the automaker has now called back more than 5.2 million 2003-11 model-years vehicles globally for faulty air bags, including 4.5 million in the U.S.
FCA US, formerly Chrysler Group LLC, is unaware of injuries or accidents involving the newly affected vehicles.
Honda is adding about 350,000 2005 Civics and 2006-07 Accords to its recalls of Takata passenger front air bag inflators. However, it said most of the vehicles deemed at risk under the expansion were already subject to previous voluntary actions taken by the company.
“Many of these vehicles have already been repaired — we’ve replaced nearly 2 million inflators since 2013, most of those in the last nine months alone,” American Honda senior vice president Bruce Smith said in a blog post.
More Hondas could be added to the list. The company said it may take several weeks for Honda to determine the specific list and the final count of additional models.
Ford upped its global Takata-related recalls to 1.5 million vehicles globally, including about 966,500 added Thursday. The vast majority are in North America, including nearly 1.4 million in the U.S.
Takata on May 19 agreed under pressure from the U.S. by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to expand the recall from 17 million to 33.8 million vehicles. The defective air bags can deploy with too much force, causing inflators to explode and throw shrapnel at drivers and passengers. The problem is linked to at least six deaths and about 100 injuries.
Automakers are still working to verify accurate and complete lists of vehicles under the expansion. NHTSA said the process could take several weeks. Consumers can search if their car or truck is impacted by the recall by entering the vehicle identification number (stamped on the driver’s side dashboard near the base of the windshield) into the NHTSA website, safercar.gov/vin. The list will be updated as more recalled vehicles are identified.
General Motors Co. said it expects to report soon a “comparatively small number” of GM vehicles.
Toyota said it is “continuing to investigate” the problem. “If further actions are found to be necessary during ongoing investigations, we will continue taking them promptly,” it said in a statement.
Mitsubishi Motors North America expanded it passenger air bag recall from Gulf Coast to nationwide. Nissan Motor Co. said while it has issued previous recalls related to defective bags, none of its vehicles are affected by the recall expansion.
The nearly 34-million vehicle recall campaign impacts makes and models of 11 automakers — BMW, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Daimler Trucks, Honda, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru and Toyota. It represents more than 13 percent of all cars and trucks on the roads in the U.S. today.
Government officials say the campaign could take years to complete and be the single largest U.S. recall of any consumer product, surpassing the callback of 31 million bottles of Tylenol in 1982 amid a poison scare. It could be months or longer before owners learn when they can schedule repairs.
Officials say there is a link to high humidity and moisture, though the precise cause of the problem is not known.
A House Energy and Commerce panel will hold a June 2 hearing on the record-setting recall.
Detroit News staff writer David Shepardson contributed.
Additional vehicles that are part of Takata’s expanded recall started being announced Thursday. Some could overlap with previous recalls. Go to safercar.gov/vin to see if your vehicle is included.
■ Fiat Chrysler adds about 1.5 million vehicles to previous U.S recalls, upping totals to about 4.5 million: 2003 Ram 1500/2500/3500; 2005-09 Ram 2500; 2004-08 Ram 1500; 2006-09 Ram 3500; 2007-09 Ram 3500; 2008-10 Dodge Ram 4500/5500; 2008-09 Sterling 4500/5500; 2004-08 Dodge Durango; 2007-08 Chrysler Aspen; 2005-10 Chrysler 300/300C/SRT8; 2005-10 Dodge Charger/Magnum; 05-11 Dodge Dakota; 2006-10 Mitsubishi Raider.
■ Ford added 966,500 vehicles Thursday, upping its total to 1.5 million vehicles globally: 2005-14 Mustang; 2005-06 GT; 2004 Ranger; 2004-06 Ranger.
■ Honda adds 350,000 vehicles in U.S. including 2005 Civic and 2006-07 Accord. Vehicles now include 2001-07 Accord, 2001-05 Civic; 2002-06 CR-V; 2003-11 Element; 2002-04 Odyssey; 2003-08 Pilot; 2006 Ridgeline; 2003-06 Acura MDX; 2002-03 Acura TL; 2003 Acura CL; 2005 Acura RL.
■ BMW ’s recall includes 420,661 vehicles: 2002-05 BMW 325i/325xi/330i/330xi Sedan; 2002-05 BMW 325xi/325i Sports Wagon; 2002-06 BMW 330Ci/325Ci/M3 Convertible; 2002-06 BMW 325i/330i/M3 Coupe; 2002-03 BMW M5/540i/525i/530i Sedan; 2002-03 BMW 540i/525i Sports Wagon; 2003-04 BMW X5 3.0i/4.4i.
■ Mitsubishi ’s recall includes 82,784 cars: 2004-06 Lancer/Lancer Evolution; 2004 Lancer Sportback.