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Honda recalls more Accords

No peace Accord for owners: Honda's previous-generation Accord requires airbag attention.

More Accord and CR-V models recalled as Honda widens airbag inflator fix

11 Feb 2010

HONDA has joined Toyota in issuing a global safety recall affecting vehicles on Australian roads in the past two days.

Centred on a defective airbag that can explode and injure occupants, the latest recall – totalling 437,763 vehicles globally – is an expansion of recalls related to the same issue with superseded Accord and CR-V models since November 2008.

In Australia, Honda first recalled 1323 vehicles due to the problem in August 2009, but yesterday it expanded that number by 703 cars (comprising 681 Accords and 22 CR-Vs) to a total of 2026, including 2001 and 2002 versions of the Accord and the 2002 CR-V.

15 center image Left: Honda CR-V.

Honda says the issue relates to defective compressed inflator propellant in the driver’s airbag, which in the event of being deployed in a collision can rupture due to excessive pressure, causing “fragments of airbag parts to scatter, possibly causing injury to vehicle occupants”.

It said that based on US investigations into incidents after February 2007, Honda “identified the cause of the problem as excessive moisture intake by the compressed inflator propellant within the inflator”.

At the time, Honda recalled 3940 vehicles in the US, 218 in Canada and 47 in Mexico, totalling 4205 vehicles in November 2008.

A second recall was issued on June 30, 2009 in the US and Canada, and on July 29 in Japan for the first time, following continued analysis of the problem, with a further 510,150 units recalled, including 443,727 in the US, 49,452 in Canada, 1532 units in Japan and 15,439 in other counties.

“As a result of our continued investigation, we identified that there is a possibility that the defect occurs when the stamping pressure during the production of the compressed inflator propellant is not high enough,” said Honda yesterday.

“And we concluded that the fact that adequate stamping pressure management was not performed for production of the compressed inflator propellant using a certain stamping machine was the cause of the problem. Therefore, we decided to expand the recall to include all vehicles using compressed inflator propellant produced with this particular equipment.”

The latest result is the recall of a further 437,763 units (378,758 in the US, 41,685 in Canada, 4042 in Japan and 13,278 in other counties), bringing the total number of affected vehicles to more than 900,000.

Honda says it will replace the inflators of all affected vehicles with a non-defective inflator to rectify the problem.

“This expanded recall broadens the scope to include all compressed inflator propellant which was produced using equipment that experienced a problem. Therefore, based on our understanding, this action would rule out the possibility of the same incident occurring in the future,” said Honda.

The company said there have been no reported injuries due to the matter in Australia, but 12 cases have been reported overseas, one leading to death.

The widening of Honda’s airbag recall yesterday follows Tuesday night’s recall of the Toyota Prius globally due to brake feel problems, including nearly 4000 cars in Australia.

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