After a U.S. federal investigation, Takata, a Japanese auto parts manufacturer agreed to pay $1 billion for covering up the existence of faulty airbags that were installed in millions of cars in the U.S. Takata airbags can explode with excessive force causing metal shrapnel to spray forcefully on the occupants of the car. The airbags have been found to be responsible for at least 18 deaths and over 180 injuries worldwide. Several different car manufacturers have faced lawsuits related to the defective airbags and the Takata Corporation has filed for bankruptcy.
Toyota, Subaru, Mazda, and BMW previously settled the lawsuit relating to their vehicles and agreed to contact owners to complete recall repairs to replace the defective airbags. Nissan and Honda had remained in the lawsuit but have now agreed to settle as well. Nissan has agreed to settle the class-action lawsuit relating to the defective Takata airbags for $97.7 million. Honda has also agreed to settle for $605 million.
Nissan’s settlement will cover various costs to customers associated with the recall including reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses, rental cars while their vehicle is being fixed, and a customer support program. To date only 30% of the Nissan vehicles with Takata airbags have been fixed. Part of the settlement will be applied to customer outreach to try to notify Nissan owners of the defective airbags so they can have their vehicles repaired.
Honda’s settlement covers up to 16.5 million U.S. vehicles equipped with potentially defective Takata air bags. Like Nissan, the settlement covers reimbursement of costs to customers related to repair of the air bag including lost wages, child care costs, and rental car reimbursements. The settlement also covers economic damages presented by customers who claim that Honda inaccurately presented their vehicles as safe and that buyers overpaid for the cars with defective airbags. Honda has also agreed to take steps to advise customers of the potential airbag issues to bring the cars in for repair.
If you are an owner of a Nissan or Honda vehicle and want to find out if your car is affected by the recall, the NHTSA offers a list of models on its website. To be sure, you can enter your vehicle’s VIN number here to see if there are any open safety recalls on your vehicle.
If you or someone you know owns one of the vehicles affected by the recall, contact your manufacturer today. And if you or someone you love has been injured as a result of one of the Takata airbags call the Alexander Law Group, LLC at 888.633.9640 right now, for a free, confidential, and personal consultation with one of our attorneys, or contact us online.