The Biggest Car Recalls in History

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No. 1 – Takata Airbags, 2013-Present

More than two dozen automakers were forced to recall close to 70 million vehicles in the biggest auto recall in U.S. history after receiving reports of a defect in airbags from Japanese supplier Takata. Honda recalled the most vehicles – more than six million - but Toyota, Fiat Chrysler, Nissan, Mazda, and others sent letters to owners while grappling with a supply shortage.

The faulty airbag inflators could rupture, releasing metal fragments that could strike the driver and passengers. Ammonium nitrate, the chemical that creates the explosion needed to inflate airbags in a crash, can deteriorate over time when exposed to heat. Since it takes about six years for the chemical to break down, older models were given priority first during the recall.