German carmakers recall U.S. vehicles over airbags

Worst is yet to come for airbag manufacturer Takata
Worst is yet to come for airbag manufacturer Takata

German automakers Daimler and Volkswagen are recalling 1.5 million cars and vans to replace Takata airbags that may be defective.

It is the latest is a series of recalls prompted by concerns about Takata (TKTDY)'s airbags.

Millions of cars have been recalled due to the risk of violent airbag explosions. But they were mostly older vehicles -- typically model years no later than 2008. U.S. regulators said last week that newer car models were also at risk.

Daimler is recalling 840,000 vehicles -- about 705,000 Mercedes-Benz cars and around 136,000 Daimler vans in the United States, the German automaker said Wednesday.

Daimler (DDAIF) said the recall was "precautionary" and would cost the company 340 million euros ($382 million). It said its 2015 net profit, reported last week, will be cut to 8.7 billion euros ($9.8 billion) as a result of the charge.

The recall includes various Mercedes models from 2005 through 2014, and some Daimler vans from 2007 through 2014.

Volkswagen (VLKAF) is recalling 680,000 vehicles in the United States, including Passat, Eos, Golf and Jetta models from 2006 through 2014.

Related: Takata airbag recall is worse than we thought

The Takata recall is one of the largest ever and affects some of the world's most recognizable automakers, including Honda (HMC), Ford (F), Nissan (NSANF), and Toyota (TM).

The Japanese auto parts manufacturer has been struggling for years to recover after its inflators were discovered to be defective. The airbags can explode when activated, firing out shards of metal that have caused death and injury at the wheel.

At least 10 deaths worldwide, nine of them in the U.S., have been tied to the exploding airbags, as well as numerous serious injuries.

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