FCA US LLC/Stellantis

A 2021 Dodge Charger Scat Pack Widebody.



CNN

Stellantis is recalling nearly 285,000 Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300 sedans in the United States because they have side curtain airbags that can burst, sending metal shrapnel flying through the cabin.

Airbag inflators rely on a chemical reaction to create gas that quickly inflates the airbag. Moisture may have entered the inflators installed in the Charger and in 300 models between 2018 and 2021 during the production process. That water could lead to internal corrosion and possibly crack the inflator, according to documents Stellantis filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The Charger and 300 are large sedans that share most of their technology. The airbag inflators involved in this recall have not been installed in any other Stellantis models, according to the documents.

While the situation is similar to the one that led to the recall of millions of Takata airbag inflators used in many different vehicles, this issue is apparently unrelated.

Starting in early May, Stellantis will send letters to Charger and 300 owners with cars that may have the problem. Owners are instructed to take their cars to a dealer to have the side airbags on both sides of the vehicles replaced. The work will be carried out at no cost to owners, and people who have already had their side curtain airbags replaced will be reimbursed for the costs.

Stellantis is not aware of any resulting accidents or injuries issues. There have been five known cases of airbag inflators bursting. In both cases, they were in parked vehicles where the interior temperature exceeded 120 degrees, which can happen especially in warm weather.

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