Three major Japanese automakers have recalled nearly 3 million vehicles worldwide to fix potentially faulty airbags made in the U.S. and Mexico by Tokyo-based Takata Corp. The June 23 recalls encompass Honda, Mazda, and Nissan vehicles and widen a previous April 2013 recall that failed to include all the affected vehicles due to record-keeping problems at Takata.
The Takata airbag problem stems from glitches in the inflator propellant. During the manufacturing process, improper storage of the components at the factories likely degraded them, making them prone to explode and send metal shrapnel into the vehicle’s cabin.
The latest Takata recall brings the number of vehicles affected by the faulty airbags to nearly 10 million worldwide in the past five years. Takata, the world’s second-largest supplier of automotive parts, said it had failed to catch all of the affected vehicles in April of last year because of erroneous record keeping at the company.
Takata’s revelation prompted Honda to recall 2.03 million vehicles globally, a third of which are in North America. Honda vehicles included in the latest U.S. recall include the Civic, CR-V, Odyssey, and Element models manufactured between April 2000 and October 2002. Honda says it knows of 41 incidents involving exploding Takata airbags in its vehicles. It has linked the defective airbags to two deaths.
Mazda recalled about 160,000 vehicles worldwide, including about 15,000 in North America. The Mazda recall affects the RX-8 and first-generation Mazda6.
Nissan recalled more than 750,000 vehicles worldwide for the faulty airbags, including 228,000 vehicles in North America. Those vehicles include the Infiniti FX35, Pathfinder, and Cube.
Mazda and Nissan say they do not know of any injuries or deaths resulting from the airbags.
Japan’s largest automaker, Toyota, recalled 1.62 million vehicles on June 11 to fix Takata airbag defects. Those vehicles affected included the Camry, Corolla, Matrix, Tundra, and Yaris. Takata’s latest findings, however, did not prompt Toyota to recall additional vehicles this week. Toyota has linked the airbag to defect to one fire, but said nobody was injured in that incident.