As GM Authority reported back in November, General Motors has decided to follow through on a massive recall ordered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to replace potentially dangerous Takata airbag inflators. Now, GM has made a point of telling dealers not to replace cracked dashboards on any of the affected vehicles.
As we covered previously, General Motors has reluctantly agreed to recall roughly 7 million vehicles worldwide that may be equipped with dangerous Takata airbag inflators. Affected vehicles include the 2007 through 2014 model years of the following models:
- Chevy Silverado
- Chevy Silverado HD
- Chevy Avalanche
- Chevy Tahoe
- Chevy Suburban
- GMC Sierra
- GMC Sierra HD
- GMC Yukon
- GMC Yukon XL
- Cadillac Escalade
The Takata airbag recall is the largest automotive recall in U.S. history, with over 100 million affected vehicles worldwide across a wide range of makes and models. The issue pertains to faulty Takata airbag inflator devices, which could rupture and send shrapnel into the cabin when activated. The design fault has been attributed to dozens of deaths worldwide.
General Motors has announced it will now follow through on the recall, despite petitioning the NHTSA on several occasions to avoid the recall, citing internal research that affected GM vehicles did not pose a threat to customers. However, the automaker points out that Takata airbag recall will not cover potentially cracked or warped dashboards.
“Due to age and environmental exposure, some vehicles may display warping or cracking around the passenger airbag opening in the upper instrument panel area,” reads a recent GM bulletin distributed to dealers. “Inspect this area with the customer at the time of the vehicle repair order write up. If warping or cracking is found, inform the customer that the condition is not covered by this recall, nor is it caused by the airbag service procedure. This warping or cracking condition will not affect the passenger side airbag deployment.”
As GM Authority has covered before, the dashboard on GM’s GMT900 vehicles, including the Chevy Avalanche, Tahoe, Silverado, and Suburban, as well as the GMC Yukon and Sierra, are prone to cracking. The issue is so widespread, there are viral YouTube videos on the subject and entire Facebook groups dedicated to discussing the issue.
Unfortunately, as the above bulletin points out, the cracked dashboards are not part of the Takata airbag recall, which means affected customers won’t get a new dash with the replacement airbag, no doubt leading to disappointment for those customers hoping for a new dash in their affected GM vehicle.