More Recalls for Takata Airbag Shrapnel

AutoInformed.comThe Takata airbag recalls are coming as fast as NHTSA can impose them. In the latest round of regulatory filings, BMW of North America, Ford Motor, General Motors, Jaguar Land Rover North America and Volkswagen Group of America are expanding replacements of unsafe Takata igniters that send shrapnel into the interior. This is already the biggest safety defect recall in U.S. history. Takata inflators have been tied to at least ten deaths and more than 100 injuries so far in the United States.

The numbers – tens upon tens of millions – and corresponding expenses are now so large that at least one company – General Motors –  is questioning the need for the ongoing expansion of mandatory repairs by NHTSA of vehicles with Takata airbag inflators.

The latest developments started last May when NHTSA expanded the recall by another 40 million arcoxia vehicles after it concluded that the ammonium nitrate propellant in non-desiccated frontal Takata air bag inflators degrades over time after “long-term exposure to environmental moisture and fluctuating high temperatures.”

NHTSA claims that at some point in the future, all non-desiccated frontal Takata PSAN inflators will need to be replaced before they have reached a certain level of propellant degradation that creates a safety risk of inflator rupture. Under the so-called Amended Consent Order with NHTSA, Takata will file Defect Information Reports covering all non-desiccated frontal Takata PSAN inflators by Dec. 31, 2019.

In the Amended Consent Order, NHTSA orders Takata to shift the focus of its testing to PSAN inflators with desiccant now that the root cause of the rupturing frontal non-desiccated PSAN inflators has been established.

The Amended Consent Order non-desiccant replacement schedule uses triage to recall the most at risk vehicles first. It is divided into three geographic zones based on temperature fluctuations, humidity and the exposure time required under those environmental conditions to degrade the propellant to the point where it poses “an unreasonable risk to safety.”

  • Zone A covers states with high temperature cycling and humidity. Time until unsafe propellant degradation may occur is projected at between six and nine years.
  • Zone B includes states that have moderate temperature cycling and humidity. Time until unsafe propellant degradation may occur is projected at between 10 and 15 years.
  • Zone C includes states with lower temperature cycling and humidity. Time until that unsafe propellant degradation may occur is forecast at between 15 and 20 years

The Latest Takata Recalls

BMW of North America is recalling 91,806 model year 2007-2011 X5 xDrive30i, X5 xDrive35i, X5 xDrive48i, X5 xDrive50i and X5M vehicles, 2009-2011 X5 xDrive35d vehicles, 2008-2011 X6 xDrive35i, X6 xDrive50i and X6 M vehicles, and 2010-2011 X6 ActiveHybrid vehicles originally sold, or ever registered, in “Zone A.” Unless included in “Zone A” above, BMW is recalling model year 2007-2008 X5 xDrive30i, X5 xDrive35i, X5 xDrive48i, X5 xDrive50i and X5M vehicles, and 2008 BMW X6 xDrive35i, X6 xDrive50i and X6 M vehicles originally sold, or ever registered in “Zone B.” BMW vehicles of these model years and models that were not originally sold or ever registered in either Zones A or B are not subject to this safety recall.

Ford Motor Company is recalling 1,896,443 model year 2007-2011 Ford Ranger vehicles, 2006-2011 Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan and Lincoln Zephyr/MKZ vehicles, 2007-2010 Ford Edge, Lincoln MKX vehicles, 2005-2006 Ford GT vehicles, and 2005-2011 Ford Mustang vehicles originally sold, or ever registered, in “Zone A.” Unless included in “Zone A” above, Ford is recalling model year 2007-2008 Ford Ranger, Edge and Lincoln MKX vehicles, 2006-2008 Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan and Lincoln Zephyr/MKZ vehicles, 2005-2006 Ford GT vehicles and 2005-2008 Ford Mustang vehicles originally sold, or ever registered in “Zone B.” Any vehicle not included in “Zone A”, or “Zone B” is not included in the safety recall.

General Motors is recalling 500,000 model year 2007-2008 Cadillac Escalade, Escalade ESV, Escalade EXT, Chevrolet Avalanche, Silverado 1500, Suburban, Tahoe, GMC Sierra 1500, Yukon, and Yukon XL vehicles originally sold, or ever registered zone A Vehicles not originally sold or ever registered in these states are not subject to this safety recall but may be covered under recall 16V-381 depending on the vehicle model year and the vehicle’s sale and registration locations.

Jaguar Land Rover North America is recalling 34,334 model year 2007-2011 Land Rover Range Rover vehicles originally sold, or ever registered in Zone A. If not included in Zone A, Land Rover is recalling model year 2007-2008 Land Rover Range Rover vehicles, originally sold, or ever registered in Zone B. Vehicles not originally sold or ever registered in either Zones A or B are not subject to this safety recall.

Volkswagen Group of America is recalling 217,000  model year 2004-2008 Audi A4, and 2005-2011 Audi A6 vehicles originally sold, or ever registered Zone A. Unless included in Zone A, Volkswagen is recalling model year 2004-2008 Audi A4, and 2005-2008 Audi A6 vehicles originally sold, or ever registered in Zone B. Lastly, unless included in Zone A or Zone B, Volkswagen is recalling  model year 2004 Audi A4 vehicles originally sold, or registered, in Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

About Ken Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print, broadcast and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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1 Response to More Recalls for Takata Airbag Shrapnel

  1. Pingback: NHTSA Nixes GM Petition for Exclusion of Millions of Big Trucks and SUVs from Takata Airbag Recalls | AutoInformed

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