Chrysler, a unit of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, said in a statement
late Thursday that it was recalling 208,783 vehicles by adding the
second inflator family as well as including five states and three
territories. The company said no accidents or injuries in any of its
vehicles have been linked to any Takata passenger-side inflators.
Chrysler was one of 10 automakers who began a regional recall in
June of older-model vehicles equipped with both driver- and
passenger-side Takata air bags in areas with high humidity.
Including a recent passenger-side air bag recall involving a single
pickup truck model and a different Takata inflator design, the total
number of affected vehicles is estimated at 617,573, Chrysler said.
"Chrysler Group has not identified an inflator defect in any of its
vehicles," the company said. "However, the company is committed -
out of an abundance of caution - to replacing these components."
U.S. safety regulators have been pushing Chrysler to expand its
recall of vehicles with Takata passenger-side air bags, adding to
the June regional recall.
On Dec. 3, Chrysler recalled 2003 Ram pickup trucks with
passenger-side bags using inflators from a product family code-named
"SPI." Officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration called the move "insufficient" because it failed to
include all inflators covered by Takata's defect information report.
The recall on Thursday covers inflators from the "PSPI" family of
Takata inflators, Chrysler said.
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NHTSA officials could not be reached for a comment on Friday.
The latest expansion adds Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi,
Texas, American Samoa, Guam and Saipan to a list that initially
included Florida, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
In addition to no injuries or accidents involving PSPI inflators,
the company has not identified a defect in the parts, including its
lab tests of nearly 600 such inflators.
The Thursday recall affects 2003 to 2005 models of Dodge and
Chrysler cars, pickup trucks and SUVs. Affected customers will be
notified, beginning Feb. 8.
(Reporting by Ben Klayman in Detroit; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)
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