It broadens a recall announced in late 2008 for less than 4,000 Accord and Civic sedans, then expanded in mid-2009 to cover another 510,000 vehicles.
The latest announcement also covers Japan, Mexico, Taiwan and Australia.
Honda – Japan’s second-biggest carmaker – said the defective airbags can overinflate and burst, spraying potentially deadly metal shards.
The carmaker said the inflators were at risk of rupturing, “resulting in metal fragments passing through the airbag cushion material and possibly causing injury or fatality to vehicle occupants”.
The fault has already been linked to 11 injuries and one fatality.
Honda said in a statement: “We cannot be completely certain that the driver’s airbag inflator in the vehicles being added to this recall at this time will perform as designed.”
Honda shares fell in Japan after the announcement.
The recall will apply to 2001 and 2002 model-year Accord, Civic, Odyssey, Pilot, CL, CR-V and 2002 Acura TL vehicles, the firm said.
The carmaker’s latest recall affects 378,000 cars in the US and 41,000 in Canada.
It extends to 4,000 vehicles in Japan and 13,000 from other countries, including Mexico (9,000), Taiwan (1,300) and Australia (700).
The Japanese-only models are Inspire, Saber and Lagreat.
Just last month, Honda had to recall 650,000 Fit/Jazz/City hatchbacks worldwide to fix a switch defect that could cause a fire.
It said the fault could allow water to enter the power window mechanism, making components overheat.
- Honda Expands U.S. Air-Bag Recall by 378,758 Vehicles (Update1) (businessweek.com)