Vehicle airbags are meant to be a feature in your vehicle designed to help save your life, or minimize injuries in the event of crash. There is no doubt in my mind that had it not been for the side curtain airbag in my old truck, my injuries would have been far worse than some minor scrapes, bruises, and soreness after I was t-boned by a drunk driver on my way to work one morning. However, airbags made by one manufacturer have reportedly done the opposite on multiple occasions resulting in "the largest and most complex vehicle recalls in U.S. history," according the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA).

A number of manufacturers have issued recalls dating back to 2019 as a result of airbags in a number of their models made by the company Takata. Just over two years ago, Toyota recalled 1.3 million vehicles over issues with an accelerant inside the driver's side airbag inflator that resulted in the safety feature exploding in high temperatures, and sending metal fragments into the vehicles cabin. That also led to other manufacturers including BMW, Honda, and Audi, among others, to announce recalls for the same issue.

Ford and Mazda were both part of that initial recall, but had petitioned the NHTSA asking to avoid recalling vehicles. Earlier this week, the NHTSA denied that petition and ordered both to issue recalls for the vehicles featuring the Takata airbags, according to Reuters. Mazda's recall affects roughly 5,800 vehicles.

Ford's recall applies to the following vehicles:

  • Ford Ranger
    • Model Years: 2007-2011
    • Built between January 9th, 2006 through December 16th, 2011
  • Ford Fusion
    • Model Years: 2006-2012
    • Built between March 15th, 2005 through July 29th, 2012
  • Lincoln Zephyr/MKZ
    • Model Years: 2006-2012
    • Built between March 15th, 2005 through July 29th, 2012
  • Mercury Milan
    • Model Years: 2006-2011
    • Built between March 15th, 2005 through June 4th, 2011
  • Ford Edge
    • Model Year: 2007-2010
    • Built between June 15th, 2006 through July 12th, 2010
  • Lincoln MKX
    • Model Years: 2007–2010
    • Built between June 15th, 2006 through July 12th, 2010

You can see if your vehicle specifically is part of this or any recall by entering its 17-digit VIN on the NHTSA website.

Ford says if your vehicle is impacted, you'll receive a letter in the mail instructing you to make an appointment with a Ford dealership to have the ignitor replaced.

[Sources: NHTSA / Ford / Reuters]

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