Honda is recalling roughly 11,600 Honda Accord vehicles from the 2004 to 2007 model years. The automaker and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration both confirm that the recall stems from problems with the car's passenger-side airbag, which was manufactured by Takata.
This particular recall, however, isn't about replacing Takata inflators that make use of ammonium nitrate to deploy airbags. No, this recall stems from a mix-up involving Takata airbag modules designed for use in South America that may have been accidentally supplied for use on North American vehicles. Because the specifications for those devices are slightly different, the airbag modules for South American cars don't meet U.S. regulations and therefore have to be replaced.
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The good news--if you can call any recall "good news"--is that the Accord is already under recall because of Takata's fatally flawed airbags. In other words, the Accord's airbag system has to be serviced anyway, now there are simply two reasons for it.
The recall affects 2004-2007 Honda Accord vehicles manufactured between October 1, 2003 and August 17, 2007. Honda estimates that the recall includes 11,602 cars registered in the U.S.
Honda says that Accord owners who've already had their vehicles serviced under the initial Takata recall don't have to take their cars for an additional inspection. Replacement parts used during the initial Accord/Takata recall meet U.S. guidelines.
Honda says that it expects to mail recall notices to owners by May 5, 2016. After receiving those notices, owners will be able to take their vehicles to Honda dealers, who will inspect and replace the passenger-side airbag as necessary, at no charge.
If you own one of these vehicles and have further questions, you're encouraged to contact Honda customer service at 800-999-1009 and ask about recall JZ3. You can also ring NHTSA's Vehicle Safety Hotline at 888-327-4236 and inquire about safety campaign #16V178000.