Vehicles Affected: More than 18,000 model-year 2003-04 Mazda6 cars and model-year 2004 RX-8 sports cars.
The Problem: A defect in the passenger side frontal airbag may produce excessive internal pressure, causing the inflator to rupture upon deployment of the device; metal fragments could strike and seriously injure occupants. This latest action is an expansion of a 2013 recall related to the ongoing problem with airbag systems manufactured by Japan’s Takata Corp., a major world supplier of the devices, involving numerous automakers.
The Fix: Mazda will begin notifying owners in August, and dealers will replace the defective airbag inflator for free.
What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Mazda at 800-222-5500, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.