Honda, Toyota and Nissan Issue Recalls Over Airbag Defect
April 12, 2013

by Jenna Reed,

Honda, Toyota and Nissan issued a global 3.4-million vehicle recall this week over airbags potentially "deploying with too much pressure." In response, Bob Beranek of Automotive Glass Consultants in Sun Prairie, Wis., says this could have an impact on the auto glass replacement aftermarket if windshields are not installed properly.

"It is possible that the passenger front airbag inflators in affected vehicles may deploy with too much pressure, which may cause the inflator casing to rupture and could result in injury," according to Honda's recall statement.

When it comes to original installation, Beranek says it is doubtful the airbag pressure will be high enough to knock out a windshield or sidelite. However, in the aftermarket if installations are done improperly, the high pressure could knock out the glass, he says.

"Urethanes used in assembly plants have more than enough strength," he says. "On the original-equipment side, the glass will hold fine. However, on the aftermarket replacement market, if the installer puts the glass in incorrectly, this higher pressure from the airbag could blow the windshield out. That's my fear."

The manufacturer of the airbags for all three automakers is Japan-based Takata.

In the U.S., Honda says in a statement it is recalling 426,000 model-year 2001-2003 Civic vehicles, about 43,000 CR-V vehicles from 2002 to 2003 model years and approximately 92,000 model-year Odyssey vehicles.

"Honda is aware of one crash in which a passenger front airbag deployed with too much pressure, causing the casing to rupture," the statement says. "Honda is not aware of any injuries or deaths related to this issue."

Meanwhile, Toyota also released a statement recalling 170,000 models in the U.S. The vehicles involved are certain Toyota Corolla, Corolla Matrix, Sequoi, Tundra and Lexus SC 430 models manufactured from 2001 to 2003.

"We received five field reports of airbags deploying abnormally after being in an accident," says Cindy Knight, Toyota public affairs manager.

Over at Nissan, 265,367 U.S. models are being recalled, including model-years 2001 to 2003 of the Nissan Maxima, Pathfinder, Sentra, Infiniti I35 and Infiniti QX4.

"Nissan and Infiniti are conducting a voluntary safety recall campaign to address the issue indentified by Takata and replace the front passenger airbag inflator," says Steve Yaeger, Nissan's technology and motorsports communications manager.

This story is an original story by AGRR™ magazine/™. Subscribe to AGRR™ Magazine.
Subscribe to receive the free e-newsletter.