News National Holden confirms 330,000 cars affected by Takata airbag recall
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Holden confirms 330,000 cars affected by Takata airbag recall

Holden is recalling 330,000 cars. Photo: Getty
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Holden has confirmed about 330,000 vehicles in Australia will be affected by the Takata airbag recall.

The Federal Government announced a compulsory recall of vehicles fitted with the defective airbags earlier this week.

In a statement, Holden said it would contact customers directly if their cars need to be recalled.

The airbags have been associated with 20 deaths globally, including one fatality last year in Australia.

Airbag
The airbags have a defect that could cause them to explode. Photo: Getty

The faulty Takata airbags’ inflators contain a defect that can cause them to explode and propel shrapnel into drivers and passengers.

A subset of the airbags called “alpha” are considered to pose the highest risk of all those covered by the recall order, classified as “critical”, but Holden said it had never used any in its vehicles.

It said the replacements would be done progressively in a series of recalls, with a plan currently being developed.

Cars manufactured as far back as 2005 and as recently as this year are among the Holden models on the list.

Some models from two other General Motors brands sold in Australia, Saab and Opel, are also impacted.

Two in seven Australian vehicles affected

The Takata airbag recall is the largest product recall in Australia’s history.

The Federal Government said about two in seven cars on Australian roads were affected by the faulty airbags.

The compulsory recall applies to all vehicles that were subject to existing voluntary recalls, and about 1.3 million additional cars.

GM vehicles impacted

  • Holden Astra-H (2005 – 2009)
  • Opel Astra -J (2012 – 2013)
  • Holden Astra-J (2014 – 2017)
  • Holden Trax (2013 – 2018)
  • Holden Barina (2012 – 2018)
  • Holden Cruze (2010 – 2016)
  • Holden Cascada (2015 – 2017)
  • Opel Cascada (2014)
  • Opel Mokka (2014)
  • Opel Zafira (2013)
  • SAAB 9-3 (2006 – 2011)
  • SAAB 9-5 (2006 – 2011)

Cars on the compulsory recall list include various models that have already been subject to a voluntary recall — Toyota, Mazda, Honda, BMW, Chrysler, Lexus, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru and several others.

But models from other manufacturers that had previously not been identified in the voluntary recall will also be subject to the compulsory recall.

Among the new manufacturers on the list are Ford, Mercedes Benz, Tesla, Jaguar, LandRover, Volkswagen, Audi and Skoda.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has ordered all affected manufacturers to provide a list of vehicle identification numbers (VINs) of the 850,000 additional affected vehicles by April 3. Those VINs will then be added to the existing compulsory recall list.

Last year, the ACCC issued a voluntary recall on the 60 types of cars sold in Australia that used the faulty airbags.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims said the recall — the biggest in Australia’s history — must be done by December 31, 2020.

In Feburary last year the Takata Corporation pleaded guilty to fraud and agreed to pay a $1.3 billion penalty for concealing a deadly defect in millions of its air bags.

Takata admitted to hiding evidence about the defect in the inflators.

According to the company’s annual report, Takata commercialised the word’s first driver airbags in 1980.

In 2013 it launched the world’s first driver-side airbag with Flexible Venting Technology, which Takata said incorporated a “smart” pressure control mechanism that allowed the air vent to be controlled by the air bag itself, rather than via sensors in the vehicle.