Honda is recalling nearly 450,000 vehicles for potentially faulty seatbelts. It affects several models manufactured between late 2016 and mid-2019, encompassing the 2017-2020 model years. The front driver and passenger seatbelts might not meet specifications, potentially interfering with the latching mechanism.
The recall affects particular 2017-2019 CR-V, 2018-2019 Accord, 2018-2020 Odyssey, and 2019 Insight models. It also includes the 2019-2020 Acura RDX, with 448,613 vehicles involved in total. However, only one percent are estimated to suffer from the problem.
A seatbelt buckle channel out of spec could interfere with the release button. Over time, continuous use could cause the channel’s surface coating to deteriorate, increasing friction and potentially causing issues that could inhibit the buckle from latching. An improperly latched buckle might not secure an occupant in the event of a crash, increasing the risk of injury or death.
Honda hasn’t received any reports of injuries or deaths related to the issue. However, it has received 301 warranty claims about faulty seatbelts. The automaker began researching the matter in June 2019 and conducting durability tests in November 2019. Over the next few years, Honda continued investigating the seatbelts, determining earlier this month that a defect did exist and issuing the recall.
Honda will instruct affected owners to take their recalled vehicles to an authorized dealer. The dealer will perform an inspection and replace the driver and front passenger seatbelt buckle release buttons at a minimum. The dealer could replace the buckle assembly based on the assessment.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Honda has already informed dealers of the recall. It will begin notifying owners by the middle of April. Owners who have already paid for these repairs are eligible to receive reimbursement.