Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Support quality journalism
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24weeks
The Globe and Mail
Support quality journalism
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Globe and Mail website displayed on various devices
Just$1.99
per week
for the first 24weeks

var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){console.log("scroll");var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1);

Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. Chairman and CEO Shigehisa Takada bows during a press conference regarding the expanding recall of his company's air bags, in Tokyo Thursday, June 25, 2015. Takada apologized to shareholders of the company at the center of a defect scandal that has resulted in recalls of 33.8 million air bags while appearing at a news conference for the first time since the problems became evident.

Shuji Kajiyama/Associated Press

The CEO of Takata Corp., the Japanese air bag maker at the centre of a defect scandal that has resulted in recalls of more than 33.8 million vehicles, appeared at a news conference Thursday for the first time since the problems emerged but shed little light on the underlying cause of the problems.

Earlier, Shigehisa Takada apologized to shareholders at their annual meeting. He then faced media questions, bowing in apology both before and after the news conference.

"We apologize deeply for the great amount of concern and inconvenience we have caused to everyone," he said.

Story continues below advertisement

On Thursday, Toyota Motor Corp., Nissan Motor Co. and other Japanese auto makers announced expansions of their earlier recalls.

Toyota said it was recalling another 2.86 vehicles globally. In an e-mailed statement, the company said the recalls did not expand the models affected but broadened the manufacturing periods involved. Some 1.729 million of those vehicles were sold in Europe. Nissan said it was recalling an additional 198,000 vehicles built between April 2007 and December 2008.

At least eight people have been killed and 100 injured by the defective air bags, which can explode with excessive force, firing shrapnel into the vehicle. The problem has persisted for over a decade, affecting 11 auto makers including Honda, BMW and Toyota.

Takada said the exact cause was still under investigation.

"We are a company that should be providing safety. Our product quality should be assured," he said. "What I must do now is to handle the problem properly and deliver safety to our customers. That is my priority, first and foremost."

A chemical inside the inflators of the air bag can kick in with too much force, blowing apart the metal inflator and sending shards flying. Exposure to moisture for extended periods appears to trigger the problem.

Takata's air bags have been installed in more than 50 million vehicles worldwide. The company says it has changed its air bag design and is no longer using the batwing-shaped inflator that was involved in the eight fatal accidents and most of the injuries.

Story continues below advertisement

The Japanese company faces a huge financial burden in responding to the crisis, but says its banks have been supportive.

Takada refused comment on the total cost of the quality problems.

Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies