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Ford recalls 32,000 cars for different kind of Takata airbag problem

Jeez, Takata, get a grip.

Wayne Cunningham/CNET Roadshow

Ford's latest recall involves Takata airbags that don't inflate properly, but it's not the same problem that spurred the big Takata scandal last year.

Ford issued a recall covering approximately 32,000 North American examples of the 2016-2017 Ford Edge, 2016-2017 Lincoln MKX and 2017 Lincoln Continental vehicles. The affected models have built dates between November 11, 2014 and February 15, 2017.

The Continental hasn't even been on sale that long.


The issue involves Takata-sourced airbags, but is not related to the issue that kickstarted the scandal. In this case, if the front driver airbag deploys, misaligned components may cause the airbag to only partially fill. The airbag cushion might also separate from the airbag module. This presents a big ol' safety risk for occupants in the event of a collision.

Replacing the airbag module will fix the problem. Ford will notify owners of the issue and have them return to dealerships for installation of the replacement part. Ford did not supply a timetable for this recall, but one can reasonably expect the notifications to be sent out in the near future.

The cause of the Takata scandal is slightly different. In that case, airbag modules lacked a desiccant to absorb moisture. If high humidity environments permitted moisture to enter the module, instead of inflating the airbag, the inflator has a chance to explode in a cloud of shrapnel, which is potentially fatal.

This is a different issue, but given that Takata is still having problems with its inflators, it's still concerning.