Hyundai Recalls 85,000 Genesis Coupes To Fix Airbag System Connector
For reasons that are very apparent, whenever there is a story about airbags right now, the first thing that comes to mind is Takata. It’s quite easy to see why: Takata airbags have been at the top of the automotive hit parade for more than a year. The now-ailing airbag giant is responsible for the largest auto safety recall in history. So, it’s somehow refreshing, yet serious, when there’s an airbag story that isn’t about Takata.
With that said, Hyundai Motors has recalled nearly 85,000 2010-16 Genesis Coupes for airbag troubles. The problem stems from the electrical harness connector to the front passenger seat occupant classification system (OCS). The connector may come away from its assembly when the seat is moved creating the problems.
OCS Is An Important System
The OCS is an important but little-recognized system in your car. Most people probably associate it with whether the passenger seat airbag connector warning light is on or off and little more. However, there is more to it than that.
The OCS operates to protect children riding in the front passenger seat. If the OCS determines that, by weight, there might be a child seat in the front passenger position, then, in the event of a crash, airbag deployment is prevented. OCS protects children as studies have found that airbags and child safety seats do not play well together in the front passenger position. Children have been injured on deployment.
Normally, front passenger airbag deployment is two-stage. In a two-stage implementation, if the accident is not severe then the airbag deploys with less force than if there is a major accident. In a major accident, the first and second stages fire. If the OCS harness is disconnected, the airbag system will deploy:
- Whether a child seat in the front passenger position or not
- As if it were a minor accident with a first-stage deployment
In either instance, injuries could occur, according to the recall notice from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Recall Begins Dec. 2
In this voluntary recall, Hyundai Motors will notify owners of the affected vehicles telling them to bring their cars to their dealers for repairs. The free repair consists securing the OCS so it will not disconnect. The recall is scheduled to begin Dec. 2.
For further information, owners can contact Hyundai customer service at 855-371-9460, asking about recall 151. Or, owners can contact the NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 888-327-4236. The recall number is 16V722000. You can also visit the agency’s website, www.safercar.gov, for further information.