Infiniti To Adopt 'nissan-plus' Strategy For Future Vehicles

Infiniti to adopt 'Nissan-plus' strategy for future vehicles

Sales at Infiniti in 2019 were down in the dumps. While the market as a whole fell 1.2%, Infiniti brand sales were down 21%. Nissan wasn't too far behind, with its sales sliding 9.9% year-to-year. None of those numbers look great, but Nissan COO Ashwani Gupta still sees a path forward for Nissan's luxury brand, Infiniti.

"We will bring back Infiniti as Nissan-plus, in terms of product and technology," Gupta told Automotive News. "Infiniti will be great again."

Toyota Adds More Than 1.1m Vehicles To Previous Fuel Pump Recall

Toyota adds more than 1.1M vehicles to previous fuel pump recall

A Toyota and Lexus recall that previously listed nearly 700,000 potentially affected vehicles has been amended to include more than 1.1 million new rides. Overall, more than 1.8 million cars, trucks, crossovers, and SUVs are part of a voluntary recall regarding fuel pumps that might stop working.   

On January 13, 2020, Toyota announced a safety recall for 695,541 Lexus and Toyota models. It included the Toyota 4Runner, Camry, Highlander, Land Cruiser, Sequoia, Sienna, Tacoma, Avalon, Corolla, and Tundra, plus the Lexus LS 500, LC 500, RC 350, RC 300, GS 350, IS 300, ES 350, LX 570, GX 460, RX 350 NX 300, RX 350L, and GS 300. The Avalon, Corolla, NX 300, RX 350L, and GS 300 in the initial recall were specifically 2019 model years, while the rest were 2018-2019. 

Banks Prepare Atm Vehicles In Event Of Disasters

Banks prepare ATM vehicles in event of disasters

Banks across Japan are buying trucks fitted with ATMs so that customers can withdraw cash in the event of a massive natural disaster.

The vehicles were sent to areas hit by a major earthquake in northern Japan last June, and areas flooded by Typhoon Hagibis last October.

Honda Recalls 2.7 Million Vehicles For New Air Bag Inflator Defect

Honda recalls 2.7 million vehicles for new air bag inflator defect

WASHINGTON — Honda said on Tuesday it will recall 2.7 million older U.S. vehicles in North America for potentially defective air bag inflators. The defect involves a different type of Takata inflator than those that have prompted the largest-ever auto safety recalls worldwide covering more than 42 million U.S. vehicles by 19 automakers with Takata air bag inflators. The new recall covers Honda and Acura automobiles from the 1996 through 2003 model years. Honda said it is aware of one field rupture of an inflator in the new recall campaign — a 2012 crash in Texas that resulted in an injury — and two in junkyards in Japan. The campaign covers 2.4 million U.S. vehicles and 300,000 in Canada, Honda said, adding that it has not determined recall numbers for other countries. Takata issued a new defect notice in November for inflators from four automakers, including Honda. Honda said all three vehicles "potentially were exposed to unusually high amounts of moisture prior to the rupture events." Honda said the recalls cover driver front airbag inflators manufactured with non-azide propellant and said "all inspections and repairs will begin in approximately one year, as replacement parts from alternative suppliers are not yet available." Honda said it "regrets any inconvenience or distress that this situation may cause to our customers as we seek to resolve this situation. Honda believes that the risk of improper airbag deployment in its vehicles remains very low at this time, but we cannot absolutely guarantee the performance of any recalled part."

Toyota Recalls 3.4 Million Vehicles For Air Bags That May Not Deploy

Toyota recalls 3.4 million vehicles for air bags that may not deploy

WASHINGTON — Toyota said on Tuesday it will recall 3.4 million vehicles worldwide because of an electronic defect that can result in air bags not deploying in crashes. The recall, which includes 2.9 million U.S. vehicles, covers 2011-2019 Corolla, 2011-2013 Matrix, 2012-2018 Avalon and 2013-2018 Avalon Hybrid vehicles and is tied to a report of one fatal crash. The vehicles may have an electronic control unit that does not have adequate protection against electrical noise that can occur in crashes, which could lead to incomplete or non-deployment of the air bags. It could also impede the operation of seat-belt pretensioners. In April, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) expanded a probe into 12.3 million potentially defective air bags covering a number of automakers, including the vehicles Toyota is recalling. NHTSA said in April it had identified two frontal crash events, including one fatal crash "involving Toyota products where (electrical overstress) is suspected as the likely cause" of air bags not deploying. Both involved newer Corolla cars. NHTSA said the air bags under investigation were installed in more than 12 million vehicles from 2010 through 2019 sold by Toyota, Fiat Chrysler, Honda, Hyundai, Kia and Mitsubishi. They were equipped with an air bag control unit initially produced by TRW Automotive Holdings Corp, which is now owned by ZF Friedrichshafen. In total, NHTSA said as many as eight deaths could be tied to the issue. Hyundai, Kia and Fiat Chrysler previously issued recalls for more than 2.5 million vehicles with the TRW air bag control units in question that might not deploy in crashes. When it recalled nearly 2 million vehicles for air bag non-deployments in 2016, Fiat Chrysler said it had reports of three deaths and five injuries that might be related to the defect. Hyundai and Kia ultimately recalled more than 1 million vehicles for air bag non-deployment concerns in 2018. Hyundai and Kia in 2018 said they had reports of four deaths and six injuries in North America tied to the issue. Toyota dealers will install a noise filter between the air bag control module and its wire harness if needed. Toyota declined to say how many deaths or injuries have been tied to the defect. Toyota will notify vehicle owners of the recall by mid-March.

New Vehicles For Aging, Shrinking Population

New vehicles for aging, shrinking population

Japanese engineers and industry officials have staged an event in Tokyo featuring ultra-small electric vehicles aimed at seniors. The move comes as the aging population has led to a rise in fatal accidents caused by elderly drivers.

The EVs have maximum speeds of about 60 kilometers per hour. Some are equipped with sensors that detect obstacles. Ministry officials say they may offer subsidies to help the spread of the vehicles.

Honda To Recall 1.6m Vehicles, Finish Takata Airbag Recalls Early

Honda to recall 1.6M vehicles, finish Takata airbag recalls early

DETROIT — Honda is recalling 1.6 million vehicles in the U.S. to replace potentially deadly Takata airbag inflators, completing its required recalls six months ahead of schedule, the automaker said Friday. When the latest recall is done, Honda says it will have recalled or accounted for 22.6 million inflators in about 12.9 million vehicles. Takata inflators can explode with too much force and blow apart a metal canister, spewing shrapnel. Twenty-four people have been killed and hundreds injured by the inflators worldwide. Honda was Takata's largest customer. The Japanese company, which was forced into bankruptcy by the troubles, used the volatile chemical ammonium nitrate to create a small explosion and inflate the air bags. But the chemical deteriorates when exposed to high temperatures and humidity and can burn too fast, blowing apart the canister designed to contain the explosion. The recalls include many Honda and Acura models from 2003 through 2015. All received replacement inflators made by Takata before February 2017 and were scheduled to be recalled a second time to replace those with inflators made by another company. Affected Honda models include the 2001-2012 Accord, the 2010-2015 Crosstour, the 2001-2011 Civic, 2002-2011 CR-V, the 2011-2015 CR-Z, the 2003-2011 Element, the 2007-2014 Fit, the 2010-2014 Insight, the 2002-2004 Odyssey, the 2003-2015 Pilot and the 2006-2014 Ridgeline.

Acura models include the 2003 3.2CL, the 2013 ILX, the 2003-2006 MDX, the 2015 RDX, the 2005-2012 RL, the 2002-2003 3.2TL, the 2009-2014 TL, the 2009-2014 TSX, and the 2010-2013 ZDX. Honda said it has completed repairs or accounted for 83 percent of the vehicles, among the highest in the auto industry. Some of the inflators have been found in scrap yards or the vehicles are no longer in use. Owners will be notified by letters starting in mid-August, and Honda is urging people to schedule repairs as soon as possible. Nineteen automakers are recalling about 70 million inflators in what has become the largest string of automotive recalls in U.S. history. The recalls are taking place on a schedule set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The recalls do not include inflators that have a moisture-absorbing chemical. The government will decide by the end of this year whether those should be recalled.