TOKYO (AFP) – Honda said Thursday that an explosion involving a defective airbag killed a woman in Malaysia, bringing to five the number of deaths believed to be linked to a flaw in parts made by embattled Japanese firm Takata.
The previous four cases happened in the United States, but Honda said one woman died in a July crash after an abnormal rupture of a Takata-made airbag.
“An airbag on one of our vehicles exploded abnormally and a Malaysian woman was killed,” said a Tokyo-based Honda spokesman.
The news came as the car giant announced an additional recall of more than 170,000 vehicles worldwide due to the risk that an explosion could send metal shards from the airbag’s inflator hurtling at drivers.
Takata is facing the biggest test in its 80-year history with lawsuits, a possible criminal probe, and accusations of “deception and obfuscation” over the defect.
Millions of vehicles produced by some of the world’s biggest automakers, including Honda, Toyota and General Motors, are being recalled over the problem.