12 Million U.S. Vehicles Recalled Over Takata Air Bags

A Takata Corp. billboard in Tokyo. Eight automakers said on Friday they are recalling more than 12 million U.S. vehicles for defective Takata air bags. Toru Hanai/File Photo/Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Eight automakers said on Friday they are recalling more than 12 million U.S. vehicles for defective Takata air bags, expanding the largest-ever auto safety push, documents posted by U.S. regulators showed.

Honda Motor Co. is recalling 4.5 million U.S. vehicles while Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV is recalling 4.3 million, according to the documents. The new recall is focused on passenger-side air bag inflators, while prior recalls were for driver-side inflators.

Takata declared 14 million inflators defective in the first phase of its latest recall, and the Friday notice is largely included in that total.

Japan's Takata Corp. this month agreed to declare as many as 40 million additional air bag inflators defective by 2019 in a move that will involve recalls by 17 automakers.

Takata inflators can explode with too much force and spray metal shrapnel into vehicle passenger compartments.

The defective air bag inflators have been linked to at least 13 deaths and more than 100 injuries worldwide. The vehicles being recalled were built between 2002 and 2011 and include pickups, SUVs and cars.

Separately, Takata is in bailout talks with a number of potential investors including private equity firm KKR & Co., source told Reuters on Thursday.

Takata and the automakers say there are no reports of any ruptures involving the vehicles in the latest recall. They are prioritized by the car's age and the risk of exposure to high humidity. As a result, some owners may not get replacement inflators for several years.

Automakers worldwide had previously recalled about 50 million vehicles with Takata inflators.

Japan's transport ministry said on Friday that automakers will recall approximately 7 million vehicles there, so the total worldwide is approaching 70 million, including some recalled multiple times.

More automakers are expected to issue notices in the coming days.

Before Friday, 14 automakers led by Honda had recalled 28.8 million inflators affecting 24 million U.S. vehicles.

At least 2.3 million of the 12 million vehicles in the latest recall were subject to previous notices related to driver air bags.

Toyota Motor Corp. has told regulators it is recalling 1.65 million vehicles while Subaru is recalling nearly 400,000 vehicles in the United States.

The two automakers said they include some discontinued Saab and Pontiac vehicles assembled for General Motors Co.

Fiat Chrysler said Friday it is recalling 933,000 vehicles sold in Canada, Mexico and outside North America for Takata inflators. It told the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that the second phase of the Takata expansion would include 660,000 U.S. vehicles.

In Japan, regulators said an additional 7 million vehicles with Takata air bags would be recalled.

Mazda Motor Corp. is recalling about 730,000 U.S. vehicles while Nissan Motor Co. is recalling 400,000.

Mitsubishi Motors Corp. is recalling about 38,000 2006-2007 Lancer vehicles and Ferrari NV is calling back 2,800 U.S. sports cars.