Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is recalling 112,001 Chrysler, Dodge, and Volkswagen vehicles in the U.S. to replace defective airbag systems.
The good news? The recalls aren't related to the ongoing Takata airbag fiasco.
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The bad news? At least seven injuries may be linked to this particular airbag problem. And a total of five million vehicles are affected worldwide.
The recall stems from problems with airbag units designed by Continental Automotive Systems. Over time, moisture can get into the computers that control those devices, causing the electronic elements to corrode.
In some cases, that corrosion can cause the systems to fail, meaning that they won't deploy during collisions. In other cases, airbags may deploy suddenly and without cause. Neither is good for drivers or passengers.
The problem with Continental's airbag systems affects vehicles from FCA, Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, and other automakers. Today's recall, however, is limited to the following makes and models:
- 2008-2009 Chrysler Town & Country vehicles built between June 18, 2007 and August 31, 2008
- 2008-2009 Dodge Grand Caravan vehicles built between June 18, 2007 and August 31, 2008
- 2009 Dodge Journey vehicles built between December 31, 2007 and August 31, 2008
- 2009 Volkswagen Routan vehicles built between August 11, 2008 and August 31, 2008
(FWIW, the Routan was built alongside the Town and Country and the Grand Caravan, based on a Chrysler platform.)
FCA says that it will mail recall notices to owners of the aforementioned vehicles, instructing them to schedule service with their local dealers. Dealers will replace the airbag control unit at no charge.
If you own one of these vehicles and have questions, you're asked to contact Chrysler customer service at 800-853-1403 and ask about recall S07. You can also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888-327-4236 and inquire about safety campaign #16V047000.