Laguna Hills, CA – December 21, 2018 – Honda (American Honda Motor Co.) is recalling certain 2019 Honda Ridgeline and Pilot vehicles due to an insecure center pillar which can interfere with airbag deployment. The potential number of units affected is 403.
According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, supplier manufacturing records identified a specific production period of right front roof side rails affected by an improper manufacturing process. Affected vehicles may have larger-than-specified mounting holes for the clip that secures the right center pillar garnish. In the event of a crash necessitating right side curtain airbag deployment, the clip may not hold the center pillar garnish in position and may potentially interfere with curtain airbag deployment. In the event of a crash, if the curtain air bag does not deploy as intended, it can increase the risk of injury.
Timeline of Events
On October 23, 2018, a loose right center pillar garnish was discovered during vehicle assembly, prompting a hold and stop shipment to be placed on all vehicles while an inquiry was made to the supplier. The supplier informed Honda that a recent repair to the die mold that punches the mounting hole for the right center pillar garnish clip was inappropriate, resulting in burrs in the sheet metal. These burrs were removed with grinding tools, which inadvertently increased the diameter of the mounting hole.
On October 24, 2018, with the suspect range of parts identified and manufacturing errors corrected by the supplier, Honda measured the retention force of all suspect right center pillar garnish clips. The vehicles with right center pillar garnish clips that met the retention force specification were released from hold. Honda investigated the potential consequences of a loose right center pillar garnish clip, and on November 20, 2018, Honda determined that the potential for FMVSS noncompliance existed and decided to conduct a safety recall.
As of November 20, 2018 Honda had not received any warranty claims, field reports, nor reports of crashes or injuries related to this issue.
Honda will notify owners, and dealers will install a bracket on the right center pillar that will securely hold the center pillar trim clip, free of charge. Because the limited new vehicle warranty on all affected vehicles would have provided a free repair for the problem addressed by this recall, without any payment by the owner, reimbursement for pre-notification repairs will not be offered. The recall is expected to begin January 25, 2019. Owners may contact Honda customer service at 1-888-234-2138. Honda’s number for this recall is D3D. Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-848.