Honda to recall vehicles due to defects in airbagsBy Paolo G. Montecillo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Auto manufacturer Honda Cars Philippines has announced a recall of over 9,000 cars sold over a decade ago due to a recently discovered defect that may compromise the effectiveness of airbags.
Honda is the second car manufacturer with operations in the country to conduct a voluntary recall this month. Earlier, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. announced a voluntary recall of 1,420 units of its subcompact Mirage GLS due to waterproofing defects in the unit’s automatic brake system (ABS).
On Thursday, Japanese car giants Mazda, Toyota and Nissan also announced global recalls collectively covering 3.4 million vehicles.
Toyota Motor Philippines vice president Rommel Gutierrez said the company was “still checking” whether any local models would be covered.
Meanwhile, Mazda’s local distributor Berjaya Motor Philippines, and Nissan Motor Philippines said none of their units sold in the country would be affected by the latest batch of recalls.
At a press conference Thursday, local representatives of Honda said all Civic models equipped with airbags sold in 2001 and 2002 would be recalled to have their front-seat airbags replaced.
The company said 2,234 Civic units, or about a fifth of all such units sold during those years, would be covered by the recall.
Likewise, 7,509 units of the CR-V 2002 model sold in the Philippines will also be covered for the same airbag defect.
“Findings show that during the manufacturing process, the automatic rejection system machine failed to detect defective airbag inflators with low-density propellants,” the company said in a statement.
“Subsequently, these inflation devices were installed in the (affected) vehicles. As a result, upon airbag deployment, the pressure increases excessively and might cause the inflator case to rupture.”
Company officials said the defect was discovered during the disposal of 2001 and 2002 model cars in Japan.
Before cars are disposed of, all airbags are popped to get rid of poisonous chemicals that, if left inside the cars during disposal, would contaminate local natural water sources.
The announcement is part of a global voluntary recall of vehicles following a Honda Motor report involving front passenger airbags.
A total of 1.142 million were installed with these faulty airbags around the world, the statement read. In the Philippines, local dealerships will replace the defective part at no charge to car owners.
Local Honda officials said the replacement of the affected part would take about an hour and would need to be done at any of 28 authorized Honda dealerships.
Other cars sold by Honda in 2001 and 2002 were the Jazz, City, Accord, CR-V, and HR-V models. Only the Civics and CR-Vs with airbags are covered by the recall.