DETROIT (AP) — The U.S. is making General Motors recall and repair nearly 6 million big pickup trucks and SUVs equipped with potentially dangerous Takata air bag inflators.
The move announced Monday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will cost the automaker an estimated $1.2 billion.
GM had petitioned the agency four times starting in 2016 to avoid a recall, contending the inflators are safe.
Takata used ammonium nitrate to create a small explosion to fill air bags in a crash. But the chemical can deteriorate and explode with too much force, blowing apart a metal canister and spewing shrapnel.
At least 27 people have been killed worldwide by the exploding inflators.
GM released a statement in response to the NHTSA, saying it would abide by the agency’s decision.
"The safety and trust of those who drive our vehicles is at the forefront of everything we do at General Motors. Although we believe a recall of these vehicles is not warranted based on the factual and scientific record, NHTSA has directed that we replace the airbag inflators in the vehicles in question. Based on data generated through independent scientific evaluation conducted over several years, we disagree with NHTSA’s position. However, we will abide by NHTSA’s decision and begin taking the necessary steps."
In a statement obtained by The Associated Press, the NHTSA said GM has 30 days to give the agency a proposed schedule for notifying vehicle owners and starting the recall.
Many different models under various GM brands fall under this recall, including some Cadillacs, Chevrolets, GMCs, Pontiacs, Saabs, and Saturns.
Click here to learn more about the recall and the vehicles affected. You can also enter your vehicle identification number on the NHTSA’s website to check if your car needs to be repaired as part of a recall.