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Ford, Takata Reach $299M Airbag Settlement

Deal helps vehicle owners recoup costs.

by on Jul.17, 2018

Ford and Takata reached a $299.1 million settlement to help offset the costs of owners with faulty airbag inflators in their cars.

Ford Motor Co. and Takata agreed to a $299.1 million settlement to allow the automaker to cover economic damages tied to the supplier’s faulty inflators. The deal covers about 6 million Ford vehicles with the inflators.

Takata produced airbag inflators that became unstable over time, inflating with too much force, spewing metal and plastic into the vehicle cabin. To date, 23 deaths and nearly 300 injuries have occurred as a result of the inflators.

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The terms of the deal, which is described as an economic loss settlement, were revealed in court documents filed in a federal court in Miami, according to Reuters.

The settlement accounts for different types economic damages resulting from the inflators, including claims that vehicles were inaccurately represented to be safe, buyers overpaid for vehicles with defective airbags and were forced to pay out-of-pocket costs in dealing with recalls.

(Ford, Mazda expand “Do Not Drive” Takata recall. Click Here for the story.)

Takata's faulty airbag inflators have been linked to 23 deaths, including two in Ford vehicles.

Those costs can include lost wages and child care costs that owners may have paid or will have to pay to get their vehicles repaired. Under the settlement, Ford will also provide free rental or loaner vehicles to owners of recalled vehicles who are awaiting repairs when parts are not available.

Six other automakers forged similar settlements worth more than $1.2 billion combined, including: Honda Motor Co; Toyota Motor Corp; Nissan Motor Co; Mazda Motor Corp; Subaru Corp and BMW AG. The issue started the largest auto industry safety recall in history, involving about 100 million inflators among 19 major automakers.

Ford said in a statement it remains “focused on working with our customers to get their vehicles repaired.” The Ford-Takata settlement must still be approved by a federal judge.

(Click Here for more about Takata’s airbag recall.)

Owners of certain 2006 Ford Rangers are being told to park their trucks immediately as part of a recall to repair faulty Takata airbags.

The seven deals account for just part of the problem. Owners have been reluctant to bring their vehicles in for repair. At last count, there are still nearly 30 million U.S. vehicles that remain unrepaired in the recall.

Heidi King, the deputy administrator of the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Friday urged automakers to make their Takata air bag recall plans for replacing all defective parts.

“It is imperative that manufacturers take every available step to reach each and every owner of a vehicle with deadly air bags, and take action to ensure that those dangerous air bags are replaced as soon as is safely possible,” King said.

(Less than half of potentially deadly Takata airbags replaced. For the story, Click Here.)

Takata last year pleaded guilty to a felony charge of wire fraud to resolve a U.S. Justice Department investigation and agreed to a $1 billion settlement, leading the company to file bankruptcy. Key Safety Systems purchased Takata for $1.6 billion with the new merged companies being renamed Ningbo Joyson Electronic Corp., according to Reuters.

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One Response to “Ford, Takata Reach $299M Airbag Settlement”

  1. Dick says:

    Lucky if the owners get 10% of this sum.