Volvo recall to service models from 20 years ago for airbag problems


Volvo is recalling another 306,782 older models globally in the U.S. for potentially defective driver-side airbags after a rupture incident resulted in a death.

The recall affects certain V70 and XC70 vehicles from the 2001 to 2007 model years.

The latest recall comes after Volvo this month said it was recalling more than 460,000 older models globally for potentially defective driver-side airbags that have been linked to the one death. The affected vehicles in the early October recall are the S80 sedan from the 2001-06 model years and the S60 sedan from the 2001-09 model years.

With the expanded scope, Volvo said the total number of vehicles being recalled globally is 767,551.

"We are continuing to perform extensive investigations to determine whether other cars might be at risk," Volvo spokesman Thomas McIntyre Schultz said in a statement to Automotive News. "The issue only affects cars from a previous product generation. No cars in our current lineup are affected by this."

In both recalls, the inflator manufacturer is German auto supplier ZF Friedrichshafen. Autoliv is the airbag assembly manufacturer.

Driver-side airbag inflators in vehicles affected by both recalls may explode during deployment, increasing the risk of sharp metal fragments striking the driver or other vehicle occupants and resulting in injury or death, according to a safety recall report submitted to NHTSA.

The airbags contain a propellant that can degrade over time after long-term exposure to high temperatures and humidity.

Airbag inflators "exposed to critical environments — hot and humid — frequently during its lifetime are at highest risk," according to the NHTSA document.

Volvo said its investigations show that there is a low likelihood of the issue happening.

The defect appears similar to that found in airbags made for many years by the former Takata Corp., which resulted in the largest recall in automotive history. Volvo's recall is not part of the ongoing NHTSA investigation.

Volvo will replace the driver-side airbags in the affected vehicles with a more modern propellant and inflator.

Dealers were notified starting Oct. 14. Vehicle owners will be notified starting Dec. 14.

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