AUBURN HILLS, Michigan — Chrysler said late Thursday it will expand its recall of vehicles with Takata airbag inflators for the second time in a week, as it bows to pressure from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The current action affects an estimated 208,783 older-model vehicles originally purchased or ever registered in seven U.S. states and five territories.
Chrysler will replace the front passenger-side airbag inflators and will notify owners starting February 8.
The new recall includes the 2003-'05 Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck; 2003-'05 Dodge Ram 2500 pickup truck; 2003-'05 Dodge Ram 3500 pickup truck; 2004-'05 Dodge Durango SUV; 2005 Chrysler 300, 300C, SRT8 sedans; 2005 Dodge Magnum wagon and 2005 Dodge Dakota pickup truck.
The expanded recall covers the vehicles that were purchased, ever registered or still registered in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas and the territories of American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, Saipan and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The Chrysler recall announced in June covered vehicles sold or registered in Florida, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Chrysler has recalled approximately 617,000 vehicles with Takata airbags since June. The defective inflators in the airbags can explode with too much force, shooting shrapnel at vehicle occupants.
Chrysler said it is unaware of any injuries or accidents involving the recalled inflators.
"The vehicle are equipped with front passenger-side airbag inflators from a product family code-named 'PSPI,'" Chrysler said in a statement. "Chrysler Group is unaware of any injuries or accidents involving PSPI inflators of the type covered by this campaign, nor has a Chrysler Group investigation identified a defect in these components.
"Further, laboratory tests on nearly 600 such inflators did not result in any failures. The inflators affected by this campaign differ in design and construction from PSPI inflators used by other automakers. They also benefited from a more robust manufacturing process."
The automaker said it is expanding the recall at the request of NHTSA.
"Chrysler Group has not identified an inflator defect in any of its vehicles," the company said. "However, the company is committed — out of an abundance of caution — to replacing these components in an estimated total of 617,573 older-model cars, trucks and SUVs."
Customers with concerns or questions can contact Chrysler at 1-800-853-1403.
Edmunds says: Owners of these vehicles will wait for several weeks before being advised to bring their vehicles in for service. If you have a concern in the meantime, it's best to contact Chrysler customer service or your dealer.