Vehicle Safety Recalls in the Philippines
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Vehicle recalls are a common occurrence across the globe and represent the automotive industry's commitment to vehicle safety. Under usual circumstances, manufacturers and dealers will notify customers when a recall occurs. However, there may be times when specific owners are unaware.

As such, we've provided comprehensive information on recalls that have occurred in the Philippines over the last year and combined it with some helpful information to tell you what to do if your vehicle was included in a recall.

An automotive recall occurs when a manufacturer determines that a specific car model has a defect. This can occur with a single specific vehicle, but typically affects a number of models within a specific manufacturing period. While they may seem like an inconvenience, vehicle recalls should be taken seriously as they serve as part of a manufacturer's commitment to safety. After all, it's better for them to tell you about a potential problem, right?

In a typical scenario, a manufacturer will inform customers to book an appointment for their vehicle to be inspected at an official dealership or service center. Replacement parts and labor related to the recall are usually provided by the manufacturer free of charge. The Department of Trade and Industry also publishes announcements of vehicle recalls on their website.

Vehicle recalls are important due to the fact that they are often associated with vehicle safety. When manufacturers discover or get repeated reports of similar problems in specific models, they issue a recall to prevent injury, death, and damage to vehicles. They are not necessarily a bad thing, as they validate a specific brand's commitment to ensuring owner safety.

If you suspect that your vehicle has been included in a recall, then you should immediately seek the advice of an official dealership or service center. In order to quickly expedite this process, you should locate your VIN number.

What is a VIN number?

Your Vehicle Identification Number (or VIN for short) is a unique 17-digit number identification number that is attached to every vehicle in the world. In basic terms, the VIN is kind of like your vehicle's fingerprint and can be used for a wide variety of purposes. It is particularly important when a dealership or service center needs to check if your vehicle has been in a recent recall. The VIN includes details on the vehicles manufacturing origin, model year, airbag types, engine size, and trim level.

Where is your VIN number located?

Typically the VIN number is located on the driver's side of the dashboard, below the windshield. It can also be found on the driver's door side.

1. BMW Philippines Airbag and ISOFIX recall

Asian Carmakers Corporation, the official importers of BMW in the Philippines issued a technical upgrade recall in May 2017. The recall was issued to address issues on airbags and ISOFIX systems on year models from 1999 to 2016. The potential airbag defect includes a possible issue with the gas generator which may cause metal fragments to be fired when the airbag is deployed. The ISOFIX issue is said to have been triggered due to a problem with the strength of their rear seat fixing brackets.

Affected models of the airbag recall are:

  • 1999 - 2004 BMW 3-Series models
  • 2002 - 2003 BMW 5-Series models
  • 2003 - 2004 BMW X5 models

Affected models of the ISOFIX system recall are:

  • 2010 - 2016 BMW X3 models
  • 2014 - 2016 BMW X4 models

1. Honda Cars Philippines Electronic Control Unit recall

In December 2015, Honda Cars Philippines Inc issued a voluntary preventative recall for specific models of the Honda City and Honda Jazz in relation to a required update of the Electronic Control Unit (ECU) software.

It was found that the current software installed on the models may cause high stress to the Drive Pulley Shaft located inside the vehicle’s Continuous Variable Transmission (CVT). The consequences of not having the software updated could lead to serious damage to the vehicle. Honda has advised owners of affected units to have their vehicle inspected by an official Honda dealership or service center.

The Honda Philippines Electronic Control Unit (ECU) recall affects the following vehicles:

•    2014 Honda City models

•    2015 Honda Jazz models

2. Honda Cars Philippines Takata airbag recall

Honda Cars Philippines Inc. (HCPI) issued a recall in March 2017 as a precautionary measure against a potentially defective airbag inflator on Takata airbags on specific units of the Honda Jazz, City, and Pilot. A total of 10,461 units were expected to be affected. HCPI advises all owners to have their vehicles inspected at an official Honda dealership or service center nationwide.

The Honda Takata airbag recall affects the following vehicles in the Philippines:  

•    Honda Jazz models sold from 2013-2014

•    Honda City models sold from 2012-2014

•    Honda Pilot models sold from 2012-2015

3. Honda Accord, Civic, City, CR-V, and Jazz airbag recall

As a matter of ensuring maximum vehicle safety, Honda Cars Philippines Inc. announced a recall for specific units of the Honda Accord, Civic, CR-V, City and Jazz to ensure that still they still maintain good safety standards. In particular, the recall aims to address a suspected defect in the inflator of the passenger front airbag. Although there were no reported accidents at the time, Honda wanted to ensure the safety of owners and advises customers to contact and set an appointment with the nearest Honda car dealerships and/or service center to have the said vehicles inspected.

Honda Cars Philippines August 2019 safety recall affects the following units:

•    Honda Accord models sold in 2003 (with model code CM4)

•    2001-2005 and 2006-2009 Honda Civic models (with model code EF1, ES5, FD1, and FD2)

•    2003 - 2006 and 2009 Honda City models (with model code GD6, CD8, GM1, and GM2)

•    2003-2009 Honda CR-V models (with model code RD4, RD5, RD7, RE1, RE4)   

•    2002-2009 Honda Jazz models (with model code GD1, GD3, GE6, GE8)

1. Mazda Takata Airbag Recall

Much like Nissan, Honda, and Mitsubishi. Mazda Philippines also issued a precautionary recall over potentially defective Takata airbags. Owners of any of the affected models have been advised to have their vehicles inspected by an official Mazda Philippines dealership or service center.

The Mazda Takata Airbag recall affects the following models:

  • Mazda2 models with the MM7DE model code that were manufactured from October 26, 2009 to July 19, 2014
  • First-generation Mazda6 models with the JM7GG or JM7GY model code, built from March 2002 to May 2005
  • Mazda6 models built from March 2005 to March 2008
  • Mazda BT-50 models built from January 20, 2006 to November 5, 2014 with the model code MM7UN

1. Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation Takata airbag safety inspection

Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation (MMPC) initiated a safety inspection campaign in September 2018 for specific models of the Mitsubishi Pajero, L200, Strada, Lancer, Lancer Evolution IX, and Fuzion. Owners of affected vehicles have been advised to have their units inspected by an official Mitsubishi dealership or service center.

The precautionary campaign was initiated to check for faulty Takada airbags, similar to other campaigns initiated by Honda, Mazda, and Nissan.

Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporations Takada airbag safety inspection campaign covers the following models based on their manufacture year:

  • 2007 - 2016 Mitsubishi Pajero models
  • 2007 - 2014 Mitsubishi Strada models
  • 2007 - 2014 Mitsubishi L200 models
  • 2006 - 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer models
  • 2009 - 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX models
  • 2005 - 2008 Mitsubishi Fusion models

1. Nissan Takata Airbag recall

Nissan Philippines Inc. urged Nissan owners to have their vehicles checked for potentially defective airbags in February 2019. This recall was issued in relation to a defective component in the Takata airbag inflator, which could malfunction when deployed. This is a similar recall to what was also called by Honda. Owners were advised to check with an official Nissan dealership or service center to see if their vehicle was affected by the recall. Affected models of the Nissan Takat airbag recall include:

  • 2008 - 2014 Nissan Grand Livina
  • 2007 - 2015 Nissan Navara
  • 2003 - 2007 Nissan Frontier
  • 2006 - 2007 Nissan Teana
  • 2003 - 2014 Nissan X-Trail
  • 2003 - 2017 Nissan Patrol Super Safari

1. Subaru global recall in November 2018

Subaru issued a global recall at the end of 2018 to cover valve spring issues for vehicles manufactured from January 16, 2012 to May 14, 2013. The recall was described as precautionary and was required to prevent the valve springs from fracturing under stress which would result in a noise coming from the engine, stalling, or an inability to start the vehicle.

Motor Image Philippines advises owners of the units mentioned below to have their vehicles inspected by an official Subaru dealership. Parts will be replaced free of charge. The Subaru global valve spring recall affects the following units based on their manufacture year:

  • 2013 Subaru BRZ
  • 2013 - 2014 Subaru Legacy
  • 2013 - 2014 Subaru Outback
  • 2012 - 2014 Subaru Forester
  • 2012.- 2014 Subaru Impreza
  • 2012 - 2014 Subaru XV

In addition, a second recall was also issued at the time in reference to inaccuracies with the multi-information displays, which affected the following vehicles:

  • 2018 Subaru Legacy
  • 2018 Subaru Outback

1. Toyota Rush curtain shield airbag computer recall in July 2019

Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) issued a recall of the Toyota Rush in July 2019 based on concerns over the Curtain Shield Airbag computer on selected units manufactured from April 2, 2018 to February 7, 2019.

As per an official statement from TMP, the said units may have issues with the programming of its respective airbag Electronic Control Units (ECU), which may cause the curtain shield airbag to deploy when the rear wheel passes through a pothole or dent in the road.

Affected units will be informed through an official notification letter. Those who received such a letter are informed to schedule their Toyota Rush to be inspected by any of Toyota’s registered dealers or service centers nationwide.

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