Ford Motor Co. will become the fourth automaker to stop using certain Takata Corp. airbag inflators.
“Ford Motor Company products currently in development will not be equipped with Takata airbag inflators that use ammonium nitrate,” Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker said today in a statement.
The automaker joins Honda, Toyota and Nissan in moving away from airbag components built by the beleaguered parts maker, which is the subject of the largest overall recall in U.S. history.
Twelve automakers, including Ford, have recalled vehicles with Takata inflators. About 19.2 million vehicles have been recalled because of the potential for exploding shrapnel from defective parts. The defect has led to at least eight deaths and hundreds of injuries globally.
Ford has recalled 1,509,535 vehicles from the 2005-14 model years because of the defect. The 2005-14 Mustang sports cars, 2005-06 GT supercars were recalled due to driver-side inflators, and 2004-06 Ford Ranger pickups built in North America have been recalled due to passenger-side inflators.
Felker said it remains a “possibility” that Ford will continue buying other parts from Takata in the future. The company also makes seat belts.
Takata agreed earlier this month to pay a $70 million fine as part of a deal with the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Takata, which said it was aware of the defect but failed to issue a timely recall, will phase out its use of ammonium nitrate in its inflators.
Takata must pay an additional $130 million if it violates U.S. auto safety laws or violates its consent order. NHTSA will select an independent safety monitor to oversee Takata over the next five years.
A voice mail for a Takata spokesman was not immediately returned.