Daimler to recall 40,000 vans in U.S. to replace faulty airbags

WASHINGTON (Bloomberg) -- Daimler AG made 40,061 vans from 2005-08 with airbags that must be replaced, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.

The affected vehicles, the 2007-08 Freightliner Sprinter 2500 and 3500 and the 2007-08 Dodge Sprinter 2500 and 3500, were manufactured from July 1, 2005, to July 31, 2008, and "are equipped with a passenger side frontal air bag that may be susceptible to moisture intrusion which, over time, could cause the inflator to rupture upon its deployment," NHTSA said in a report posted Saturday.

Daimler Vans USA will notify Freightliner owners and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV will alert customers who bought the Dodge model, according to the agency.

Dealers have been instructed to replace the airbags free of charge. No schedule has been released for the repairs.

A seventh death tied to faulty airbags was confirmed Friday by the U.S. agency. A 22-year-old woman died two days after an April 5 crash.

Takata Corp., which produced the air-bag inflator that ruptured and injured the woman, agreed on May 19 to expand its recall effort to cover about 34 million units -- the largest product-safety recall ever in the U.S.

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