GM issues Takata recall: Cadillac Escalade; Chevrolet Silverado, Tahoe, Suburban; GMC Sierra; more

June 2, 2016

Yesterday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration posted recalls affecting nearly 1.5 million U.S. vehicles equipped with Takata's fatally flawed airbags. Soon afterward, Ford added 1.9 million more vehicles to the recall roster.

Today, General Motors has issued its own preliminary Takata-related recall. It marks the first time that such a recall has affected the Cadillac lineup.

As with all of yesterday's recalls, GM's involve Takata's passenger-side airbags, which use ammonium nitrate to inflate the devices during collisions. Exposure to heat and moisture can cause that compound to become destabilized, resulting in an explosion when the airbags deploy. Such incidents have pelted vehicle occupants with shrapnel, causing at least 11 deaths and hundreds of injuries around the world.

GM pickups and SUVs affected by today's recall include:

  • 2007 - 2011 Cadillac Escalade
  • 2007 - 2011 Cadillac Escalade EXT
  • 2007 - 2011 Cadillac Escalade ESV
  • 2007 - 2011 Chevrolet Avalance
  • 2007 - 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 1500
  • 2009 - 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 2500
  • 2009 - 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 3500
  • 2007 - 2011 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2007 - 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe
  • 2007 - 2011 GMC Sierra 1500
  • 2009 - 2011 GMC Sierra 2500
  • 2009 - 2011 GMC Sierra 3500
  • 2007 - 2011 GMC Yukon
  • 2007 - 2011 GMC Yukon XL

GM says that because this is a preliminary announcement, and because the recall will be done by zones (as were many of those from Infiniti, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Infiniti, Saab, and Subaru), it doesn't have accurate data on the number of vehicles affected. To obtain that information, it will need to analyze sales and registration stats from all states and territories. 

GM also notes that it is issuing this recall to cooperate with NHTSA, which expanded the U.S. Takata recall last month. However, GM has extensively tested its airbags and doesn't believe they pose a danger to drivers or passengers. As the company explains:

"[T]he Takata passenger-side airbag inflators used in these trucks and SUVs are a variant engineered specifically for these GM vehicles, and include features such as greater venting, unique propellant wafer configurations and machined steel end caps. The inflators are packaged in the instrument panel in such a way as to minimize exposure to moisture from the climate control system. Importantly, these full-size trucks and SUVs have features and attributes that minimize the maximum temperature to which the inflator will be exposed, such as large interior volumes and standard solar-absorbing windshields and side glass."

GM says that owners affected by this recall will be notified by mail. Should you have questions, you can visit GMTakataAirbag.com, or call the customer service departments for Cadillac (800-333-4CAD), Chevrolet (800-222-1020), or GMC (888-988-7267). 

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