So, you just purchased a Honda or an Acura. You spent thousands of dollars and incurred significant debt for your new car. You are excited. You have that new car smell. It’s clean. Its got all the new bells and whistles. What could be better?
Then, you hear a news story about problems with Takata airbags. You barely pay attention. What’s a Takata airbag? I don’t need to worry about that.
But, you keep hearing about it. You start reading news reports. And then, you get a letter. Your new Honda or Acura has been recalled because your airbag could explode if you are involved in a wreck. Now, your car is labeled. It was involved in a recall. When you go to sell it, you have to answer yes to anyone who asks, “Has your car ever had a recall? A problem?”.
More importantly than the loss of value, you are now driving around a car which could be extremely dangerous if you are involved in a wreck. According to Honda and Acura, they have the parts to replace all 300,000 recalled vehicles, but what happens if a drunk driver hits you on your way to have the recall work performed? It’s a risk you have to take.
Recalls are a part of life. They happen all the time. But, these companies never seem to be hurting, and when they do, the government bails them out. What about the consumer? Who helps the consumer out? Who pays the consumer for her lost time while she has to return the defective vehicle/airbag? Who pays the consumer for lost value?
The answer? No one.
These large corporations can make all the mistakes they want, and they just have to fix their mistake regardless of the effect on the consumer. According to this CNN article, Takata has known about this airbag safety issue since 2014. If you are a Honda or Acura owner, you may have been driving this vehicle around with your family for two (2) years, and you are just now hearing about this issue. Over 22 manufacturers are involved in this recall with Takata airbags. Nearly 70 million airbags are involved.
These airbags have been linked to 10 deaths in the United States. That’s 10 deaths too many. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, these Takata airbags have a 50% chance of exploding when deployed in a wreck compared to 1 % for other airbags.
If you want to look up your VIN to see if your car is involved, you can go to the NHTSA site here. You can also view a CNN video below.