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GM recalls Chevy Malibu over airbag weld failures

by Justin King

The defect can allow the inflated side airbags to move out of position or separate from the seat.

General Motors has issued a recall for the 2016 Chevrolet Malibu to replace defective airbags.

The weld studs that mount the front and rear side-impact airbags are prone to fracture and separate from the module during deployment, making the cars non-compliant with federal safety regulations.

"Fractured weld studs may allow the side air bag to move out of position during deployment, increasing the risk of injury," the recall notes.

The airbag modules are supplied by Takata, however the problem appears to be separate from the rupturing inflators that have led to recalls for millions of vehicles. The issue was first identified during lot acceptance testing in early February, prompting an investigation. GM suggests the root cause has not been definitively established, though it appears to be a simple case of insufficient weld bonding.

The campaign affects 3,137 vehicles sold in the US market.

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