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Thursday, 11th April 2013
In Business In Japan,

Cars recalled to Japan over airbag problems

Japanese carmakers are recalling nearly 3.5 million vehicles after it emerged that they could contain a defective part, which will cause the airbag inflator to rupture and then deploy abnormally during a crash.

The move affects the top four manufacturers in the country; Honda, Toyota, Nissan and Mazda.

Honda will be recalling 1.13 million cars, including its Civic, CRV and FRV models, while Nissan is bringing 500,000 back to its factories.

It has been revealed that the defective part was supplied by Takata Corp and was fitted to vehicles sold between 2000 and 2004.

Speaking to Sky News, a spokesperson for Nissan said that the company is "conducting a voluntary safety recall campaign to address the issue identified".

A representative of Toyota told the BBC that the company was now aware of five incidents where the airbag inflator had become ruptured, with two of these taking place in Japan.

News of the recall saw Takata's share price drop by nine per cent to 1,819 yen on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The company currently supplies both airbags and seatbelts to some of the world's major automakers, including Ford Motor Co, Daimler AG and the previously mentioned Japanese brands.

It has not been revealed how much it will cost to carry out the replacement and re-fitting of the airbags. It is believed that it will take up to two-and-a-half hours to carry out the work.

Kohei Takahashi, an analyst at JP Morgan in Japan, told Reuters: "The inflators themselves are not so expensive, but there is the cost to cover for the hours spent to fix the problem."

Last month, it was revealed that Toyota would be recalling 209,000 FJ Cruiser vehicles because the seatbelt retractors for the driver and front passenger seats had been mounted in the rear access doors.

The move affects vehicles sold between 2007 and 2013.

Written by Graham McPherson

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