German carmakers Volkswagen and Daimler are recalling 1.5 million vehicles in the United States due to potentially faulty airbags made by Japanese company Takata Corp. As Ivor Bennett reports, it's an added distraction for VW which is still getting to grips with its own emissions scandal.
Volkswagen is recalling 680,000 cars in the U.S. - but it's not because of the emissions scandal. It's due to potentially faulty airbags made by the Japanese firm Takata Corp. VW isn't the only German carmaker modifying vehicles because of the long-running safety crisis - Daimler is bringing in 840,000. It follows a decision by U.S. safety regulators to recall 5.1 million defective vehicles. For VW it's an extra nuisance at a time when it's still struggling to convince investors it's on top of its own crisis. Mike Ingram is from BGC Partners. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BGC PARTNERS, MARKET ANALYST, MIKE INGRAM, SAYING: "Management haven't really explained what exactly happened. It beggars belief that this scandal, as broad as it's been, as pernicious as it was, was just a function of a few rogue engineers and software developers." Takata knows only too well how these scandals can drag on. Problems with its airbags - they explode with too much force spraying metal - were first reported in 2009. At least 10 deaths and more than 100 injuries have now been linked to them. And 14 automakers have recalled around 24 million U.S. vehicles. Daimler says it will take a charge of 340 million euros to cover the cost of the recall, slightly revising last week's results. VW declined to comment on how much it would cost them.