In many countries around the world slamming the car door is a sign of disrespect to the owner of the vehicle. This is not necessarily the case in the United States, but some Nissan owners may want to rethink their approach as the automaker announced the recall of over 54,000 cars because the side airbags can allegedly go off when the door is slammed shut. Nissan told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that defective side impact sensors can lead to the inadvertent deployment of the side airbags, which may cause injury if the door is slammed when entering certain 2012 Nissan Versa automobiles. No injuries were reported at the time of the recall.
The NHTSA opened this investigation in October 2016 after receiving complaints from Nissan owners that both the curtain and seat-mounted airbags allegedly deployed without warning when the door was shut. Nissan found that some of the side impact sensors were assembled with the wrong materials, which can lead to oxidation, deterioration, and an inability to differentiate between a crash and a door being shut with too much force. Nissan told authorities that most of the reported incidents occurred when exiting the vehicle, but a few did occur when a passenger entered the cabin increasing the likelihood of sustaining an injury.
This announcement is the latest in a string of airbag related recalls by Nissan, including the unprecedented Takata fiasco, but the automaker said that their latest announcement is not connected. Last year Nissan recalled millions of potentially lethal airbag inflators made by Takata, as well as more than 3.5 million additional vehicles worldwide over side airbags that may not properly deploy in an accident. As part of that recall more than 600,000 Nissan Sentra vehicles manufactured from 2013 to 2016 were deemed unfit to drive because their side airbags could allegedly deploy when they were not meant to. The other 2.9 million vehicles had airbags that did the opposite and allegedly did not inflate when they were needed.
Owners of a recalled 2012 Nissan Versa are being told to close their doors with extreme caution. Affected consumers should contact an authorized Nissan dealer immediately to ensure their vehicle is safe to drive. Nissan will install new sensors and a new jumper harness free of charge, but the timeline has not yet been released.
To see if your Nissan has been recalled visit: http://consumerwatch.com/vehicle-recall-checker-by-vin-check-vehicle-recalls/
To contact Nissan directly call: (800) 647-7261