Chevrolet recalls new Malibu for a different kind of Takata problem

It's not related to the forward airbag inflator, but the issue is no less serious.

As with most other recalls, the fix is free, and owners will be automatically notified.


Takata is in hot water after selling a bunch of faulty airbag inflators that, in the presence of moisture, can lead to ruptures that send shrapnel into the cabin. Chevrolet just announced a recall of Takata-sourced airbags, and while it's not related to the inflator, the problem is still worth mentioning.

The recall covers 3,100 examples of the brand-spanking-new 2016 Chevrolet Malibu. In these vehicles, the Takata-sourced side airbag assemblies (both front and rear) have weld studs that might break apart from the bag when it's deployed. If the airbags inflate in an improper position, people could be hurt or the airbags could fail to protect the occupants.

Takata doesn't make the airbag inflator itself in this case -- The Detroit News points out that ARC Automotive built these inflators -- but the Japanese company still constructed the potentially troublesome assembly. The problem was picked up in the course of routine testing, and no injuries have been reported.

Even still, this is another mark against a company that's been under intense scrutiny for its manufacturing processes. Other parts suppliers are foaming at the mouth at the chance to fill in the marketplace gaps Takata left in the wake of its scandal, and this new issue will likely give those companies an even better position at the bargaining table.

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