Honda Canada settles class action suit over Takata airbag inflators

OTTAWA — Honda Canada has become the latest manufacturer to agree to a settlement in a class-action lawsuit over faulty Takata airbag inflators.

In a statement Monday, Honda said it will reimburse out-of-pocket expenses for customers, some of whom have had to make repeated visits to dealer service departments to replace inflators that can explode with too much force and send metal shards through a vehicle cabin during collisions.

A consortium of law firms representing vehicle owners says settlements have already been reached with Toyota, Mazda and Subaru. Windsor, Ont., lawyer Harvey Strosberg, a settlement class counsel, said actions continue against a number of other automakers who used Takata inflators.

Honda said the agreement “will further enhance Honda Canada’s significant efforts to reach and encourage customers to bring their vehicles to authorized dealers for a free airbag inflator replacement.”

It did not provide any estimate of what the settlement, which requires court approval, could cost the manufacturer. It applies to Honda and Acura models and even some Honda motorcycles.

The Takata recall is the largest in automotive history and involves some 100 million potentially risky inflators worldwide. The inflators have been tied to at least 25 deaths globally. No abnormal Takata inflations have been reported in Canada.

Manufacturers and safety regulators say many vehicles, especially older models, remain on the road with inflators that can more dangerous with age, especially in hot, humid climates.

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