We just reported that Volvo was expanding its recall. Now in the middle of October 2021, the manufacturer has further expanded its recall. This recall again involves front driver’s airbags made by ZF/TRW that explode much like the infamous Takata ones, which prompted a global recall of 100 million vehicles.
ZF/TRW’s inflator does not use ammonium nitrate as Takata did, but the propellant used to expand these airbags in a split second can break down due to heat and humidity and then burn too quickly when engaged. This unstable chemical reaction blows apart the metal canister it is stored in.
This issue caused 19 deaths in the U.S. and 28 worldwide. The airbag has injured more than 400 people in the U.S.
The tally to date
So far, the total number of vehicles recalled stands at an estimated 768,000 worldwide for the three recalls. The latest recall involves 195,000 XC70 and V70 wagons from model years 2001-2007. The manufacturing dates are February 22, 2000, to May 4, 2007. This recall joins 260,000 S80 sedans from 2001-2006 and the 2001-2009 S60s sedans. The initial recall in November 2020 involved these same models, focusing on hot or humid regions. However, the manufacturer keeps expanding the years and territories included in the recall.
What can owners do?
They can go online to the manufacturer’s website and/or enter a 17 digit vehicle identification number (VIN) number at the National Highway Traffic Safety Agency (NHTSA). They can also call the manufacturer or their local dealer for more information. If they haven’t received a letter already, letters will go out in November (second recall) and December (latest recall).
The dealers will replace the airbag inflators in these recalled models free of charge, but this is little consolation for those already injured or killed. It’s important to remember that this problem could continue to expand, so all Volvo owners should follow this issue.