More than 37,000 Volkswagen Beetle models are being recalled in the United States due to a defective Takata driver front airbag inflator.
A recall notice reveals that the driver’s side airbag inflator may explode because of propellant degradation following long-term exposure to high humidity, high temperatures, and high-temperature cycling. It is the same issue that has impacted tens of millions of other vehicles around the world.
Volkswagen says that impacted Beetle models are fitted with a Takata SDI-D driver frontal airbag inflator were tested internally and not shown to have any defects. However, it has agreed to issue a recall after consultation with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
The recall involves 2015-2016 Beetle models produced between June 20, 2014 and July 29, 2016, as well as 2015-2016 Beetle Convertible models built from June 30, 2014 to July 28, 2016. The recall involves a total of 37,558 Beetles.
The automaker notes that while an inflator explosion could send sharp metal fragments into the driver or other occupants, resulting in serious injury or death, it says that the airbag inflators involved in this recall do not pose an unreasonable risk to motor vehicle safety to drivers of affected vehicles. However, it acknowledges that over a longer period of degradation, the airbag may not perform properly in the event of a crash.
advertisement scroll to continue
Both dealers and owners will be notified of the recall on or before February 17. Owners will be instructed to take their vehicle to their local dealer where the driver frontal airbag will be replaced at no cost.