Earlier last month, Kia Motors America, Inc. initiated a recall of over 145,000 of its vehicles because the driver’s frontal air bag may not deploy if the vehicle is involved in a crash. The New York Times explains that this recall “covers the 2006-8 Optima sedan and the 2007-8 Rondo wagon.”
According to the recall, damage to the clock spring assembly over time may prevent the air bag from deploying. This greatly increases the risk of severe injury during a car accident, as properly working air bags are an essential safety component.
Although the New York Times reports that Kia said it was unaware of any injuries related to this defect, apparently Kia learned of this issue last fall when “reviewing warranty claims.”
When an airbag fails to deploy in a frontal crash it’s obviously a serious safety problem. Having known about this problem since last fall, we are left wondering why the recall was only just announced this month. And, moreover, why owners are expected to wait until March to receive the necessary repairs.