U.S. opens new probe into 30 million vehicles with Takata airbag inflators
WASHINGTON — U.S. auto safety investigators have opened a new probe into 30 million vehicles built by nearly two dozen automakers with potentially defective Takata airbag inflators, a government document seen by Reuters on Sunday showed.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Friday opened an engineering analysis into an estimated 30 million U.S. vehicles from the 2001 through 2019 model years. Automakers were alerted to the investigation, which is not yet public.
The new investigation includes vehicles assembled by Honda Motor Co., Ford Motor Co., Toyota Motor Corp., General Motors, Subaru, Tesla Inc., Ferrari, Nissan Motor Co., Mazda Motor Corp., Daimler, BMW, Chrysler (now part of Stellantis), Porsche Cars, Jaguar Land Rover (owned by Tata Motors) and others.
The automakers on Sunday either declined to comment before NHTSA’s expected public announcement on Monday, or did not immediately respond to requests for comment. NHTSA declined to comment.
The 30 million vehicles include both vehicles that had the inflators installed when they were manufactured as well as some inflators that were used in prior recall repairs, NHTSA said in the document.
Over the last decade, more than 67 million Takata airbag inflators have been recalled in the United States — and more than 100 million worldwide — in the biggest auto safety callback in history because inflators can send deadly metal fragments flying in rare instances. Takata, following a bankruptcy reorganization, sold its assets to Key Safety Systems, which is now part of Chinese-owned Joyson Safety Systems.
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