The latest recalls – Ford with 816k vehicles and Honda with 1.29 million – show how the Takata airbag debacle keeps growing, and the Japanese components maker might have to pay a hefty bill.
According to the latest reports, Takata Corp. will pay $1 billion and plead guilty to fraud as part of a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department, a deal that will conclude the government’s criminal investigation into the Japanese auto supplier’s faulty airbags. These can explode and send shrapnel inside the cabin – 15 people around the world and of which 11 in the United States died already. The Takata airbag recall – because it involves numerous brands – has become the world’s biggest automotive recall to date. Hundreds of people have been injured and the carmakers are not only recalling the vehicles in the United States, but around the world as well.
The latest recalls include 816,000 vehicles from the Blue Oval company – including models such as the Ford Mustang, GT Ranger, Lincoln MKZ and Zephyr or the Mercury Milan. The action comes immediately after Honda decided to recall yet another 1.29 million vehicles – and the Japanese automaker has been by far the heaviest hit by the Takata debacle, having called back into services more than 11 million units around the world. In the US alone regulators believe the total recalls will amount to 42 million, with more than 70 million faulty ignition devices.