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What do you do if your car is part of the Takata airbag recall? We're here to help you figure it out.
The recall affects more than a dozen car brands in Australia, with SUVs, sedans, hatches, wagons, sports cars, convertibles and even trucks and motorcycles affected. Build dates range from 1999 to 2016. See below for a list of affected vehicles.
You may need to provide your car's VIN or chassis number which will allow you to figure out what you need to do next.
The recall is for airbag modules - as the consumer watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), puts it: "The inflator components may deteriorate and subsequently misdeploy in an incident causing metal fragments to propel out of the airbag."
So, this isn't like a jar of pickles that might have a Band-Aid in it - people have been killed or seriously injured by faulty airbags, and car companies are doing their bit to try and ensure owners have their potentially faulty parts replaced. There are certain cars fitted with Takata 'Alpha' airbags, which are more urgent in their replacement due to the fact they are more likely to cause injury or death in the event of an accident.
There are multiple ways you can figure out if your car is affected by the Takata recall. You can wait for a letter in the mail, you can look it up at the Product Safety Australia website, or - in some cases - you can go to the brand's site to use a web tool to search for your car.
You may need to provide your car's VIN (Vehicle Identification Number, a 17-digit code that is unique to your car) or chassis number (the final seven digits of the VIN) which will allow you to figure out what you need to do next.
For quick reference, your VIN is on your registration papers, or you can typically find it on your car by looking at the lower part of the windscreen on the passenger side.
The vehicle you drive will determine whether it needs the driver, passenger or both front airbag inflators replaced.
Carmakers are attempting to notify owners by mail if their car is known to be affected by the recall. There are replacement parts making their way into the country, but due to the massive demand for the required items, some vehicles may not be able to be fixed for some time.
The vehicle you drive will determine whether it needs the driver, passenger or both front airbag inflators replaced. It is expected replacements will take about 90 minutes once booked in, and the fix will be at no cost to the car's owner.
To find out more, head to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's Product Safety Australia website.
Here is a list of brands that are affected by the Takata recall in Australia, and how you can find out what you need to do next:
- Ferrari: contact your nearest Ferrari dealership for replacement of passenger side airbag
- Mercedes-Benz: it is understood all affected cars have had the required fixes completed
- Performax: if you own a Chevrolet Silverado, GMC Sierra or Ford Mustang, you'll receive a letter when replacement parts are available. Owners can also email and/or phone Performax for more information on 07 5482 7833 or firstname.lastname@example.org