Here’re Steps To Get Your Honda Defective Airbags Replaced By Honda Malaysia

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Oct 20 2014
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In 2004, an air bag exploded in a Honda Accord in Alabama, shooting out metal fragments and injuring the car’s driver. Strangely, Honda and its Japanese air bag supplier deemed it “an anomaly” and did not issue a recall or seek the involvement of federal safety regulators. Last month, after 139 injuries caused by air bags manufactured by Takata, a massive recalls was initiated involving more than 14 million vehicles.


The recalls involves Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Chrysler, Mazda and even BMW. But the biggest impact was on Honda as the number of vehicles affected skyrocket to 6,399,000 units from 2008 till this year. The exercise also affects Toyota (4,410,000 owners), Nissan (1,330,000 owners), Chrysler (298,000 owners), Mazda (204,000 owners) and 1,820,000 BMW proud owners. In total, 14.2 million cars using air bag manufactured by Takata literally drove a car fitted with a “time bomb”.

Takata's Problem Air Bags - Honda, Toyota, BMW, Nissan, Chrysler, Mazda, OthersTakata Factory

This means since the first air bag explosion recorded in 2004, Honda and Takada had been hiding the defect from the public. Well, at least they didn’t do enough to rectify the problem as soon as they realized the air bag flaw. For example, Honda did not issue a safety recall until late 2008. But even then, the recall was kept at a very small number – 4,205 vehicles only. Honda and Takata tried to hide the problem from the public, as much as they could.


It was only after a minor accident in Jennifer Griffin’s Honda Civic 6-months later, where the air bag exploded and sent a two-inch piece of shrapnel flying that Honda realized they couldn’t keep hiding. Apparently, when highway troopers found 26-year-old Ms. Griffin, with blood gushing from a gash in her neck, they were baffled by the extent of her injuries. The fact that Honda only made recalls in stages from 2008 till this year shows the company treasure profits above anything else, including innocent lives.

Jennifer Griffin Honda Civic - Airbag Exploded

The problem was so severe that even Honda Malaysia has issues a recall, something quite rare in the country. For some weird reasons unknown, vehicle owners in Malaysia normally do not “enjoy” privileges of getting their cars recalled due to defects. As strange as it may sound, cars in this country are immune from defects (*grin*), no matter how deadly it affects the rest of the world. But not this time. The problem was too deadly to be swept under the carpet.


Hence, in June this year – after two deaths and more than 30 injuries linked to ruptures in Honda vehicles worldwide – Honda Malaysia issued recalls of an undisclosed number of four Honda models – City and Accord manufactured in 2003, Stream made from  2001 to 2003, and Jazz 2002 to 2003. Honda said it will be contacting the affected customers individually. Here’s an interesting question for Honda owners – have you been contacted by Honda as claimed?

Honda Car Sales Outlet

Most likely not, for obvious reason. So how do you go about getting your car fixed? In Malaysia, you’ve to be pro-active simply because consumers protection is almost non-existent. You need to contact Honda Malaysia, write them dozens of love letters, beg them, threaten them, bribe them and anything you could possibly think of, before they would entertain you. Okay, we were exaggerated. Here’re the steps you need to take:


{ Step 1 }  Drop Your Queries On Their Website

Honda Malaysia Website Enquiry - Personal Details

The first thing you need to do is to send them an enquiry about your defective airbags. Visit their website – fill in your personal details, your Honda car particulars and what message you wish to convey. Obviously, you can refer to the recent recalls about airbag defect. Sure, your car may be 10-years-old but that doesn’t mean you’re not covered in this deadly problem. In fact, fatal accidents could had already occurred which was caused by Honda-Takata airbags, but wasn’t made public.



{ Step 2 }  Send Honda Malaysia Email

After Step-1 above, you should receive an auto-respond from Honda that they’ve received your online enquiry. But that doesn’t mean they would be contacting you within the next 48-hours or so. So, the second layer of pressure is to send them an email from your personal Yahoo or Gmail account. Here’s Honda Malaysia personal email address and a sample of the contents:

  • custcare.online@honda.net.my

Yahoo Mail, Gmail, Hotmail

Dear Honda Malaysia,

My query sent through your website dated DD/MM/YYYY refers. In June 2014, Honda Malaysia has issued a recall over faulty airbags affecting some models manufactured in 2003. I believe my Honda Accord manufactured in the same year is affected. Hence, due to safety reason, I’m sending this email to seek your urgent and kind attention.

My Honda Accord information is as below:

– No Plate: WKX 8888

– Owner’s Name: Barack Obama

– Contact No: 019-168 8888

Appreciate if you can advice on the matter mentioned above soonest possible.

Thank You,

Barack Obama



{ Step 3 }   Wait & Furnish JPJ Grant and IC

Within a week, you should receive a reply from Honda Malaysia acknowledging your problem with a reference code on your case. For example, the reference code could be “Ref No: EAL8888-1”. This email will tell if your car is indeed affected by the recent recalls. But even when you received this email, it wasn’t really useful as they need your documents for verification purpose only. Here’s a sample reply from Honda Malaysia.

Barack Obama Malaysia Identification Card

Dear Mr Barack Obama,

Thank you for contacting Honda Malaysia Sdn Bhd.

With regards to your enquiry, please be informed that the Accord model with the registration number WKX 8888 bearing the chassis number ABCDE88888F888888 is affected under the Airbag Product Update (PUD).

Kindly furnish us a copy of your JPJ grant and Identification Card (IC – Ownership) for verification purposes through any of the following methods:-

1. By E-Mail     : attach the required documents OR
2. By Fax         : 03 – 7652 2440 (Attn: E-Comm Unit).

Should you require further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact our Toll Free Line at 1 800 88 2020.

Warmest regards,
Online Customer Care



{ Step 4 }   More Emails Correspondence

After you sent Honda Malaysia a copy of your JPJ grant and Identification Card, they’ll probably need one to two weeks just to acknowledge receipt of your documents. In their email, they’ll probably tell you that the Airbag Product-Up-Date (PUD) will commence once the parts are available and all affected customers will be notified through an official invitation letter in batches.



{ Step 5 }  The Real Wait Game Begins

If you think Honda Malaysia is acting on your case now and would send you an official invitation letter sooner than your next monthly salary, you’re in for disappointment. If you do not do anything but rather wait, your case could drag for years, seriously. So, now is the time for you to harass and bombard them with “follow-up” emails requesting for status update. Most likely, they won’t entertain your emails and keep their elegant silence. Even if you call them, they would tell you they’re processing your case.


To Honda Malaysia, you don’t have priority simply because they can’t charge you a single penny in this case. And since they can’t charge you, this is an extra cost to them. And why should they care for your safety if they couldn’t make any profit by fixing the defective airbags, since Honda never cares in the first place, as far back as 2004 when they first discovered the problem? So, what’s your next course of action? Write them a “snail letter”, together with your emails correspondence history.

Honda Defective Airbag - Waiting for Invitation Letter - Power of Dreams

  • Honda Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.

Level 3A, CP Tower No. 11,

Jalan 16/11, Pusat Dagang Seksyen 16,

46350 Petaling Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia.


Why this letter is important? Because it serves as a valid document in case you’re fortunate enough to see the airbags in action, and lucky enough to be alive to sue Honda Malaysia (*grin*). Get the juice?



{ Step 6 }  Email / Invitation Letter from Honda Malaysia

After 2 – 4 months of waiting (if you’re lucky), Honda Malaysia will send you an email, finally. This email will probably tell you that the Airbag Product-Up-Date (PUD) invitation letter has been sent to you. Upon receive of the said letter, you’ve to set an appointment in advance with your preferred Honda Authorized Dealer to have the part replaced. You can contact your preferred service centre from http://honda.com.my/dealers/dealers.


The letter will have a subject – Invitation For Product-Up-Date (PUD) Exercise: Supplemental Restraints System (SRS) Inflator. The letter comes with three languages – English, Bahasa Melayu and Chinese.



{ Step 7 }  Make An Appointment With Honda Authorized Dealer

Your agony is not over yet. Don’t jump in joy even after you received the precious “Invitation Letter”. And don’t speed off to the service centre either. You need to call your preferred Honda Authorized Dealer and make an appointment. Here’s the amazing fact. They probably aren’t aware of such defective replacement exercise. Unless, the service centre is just located next door, you may want to scan your invitation letter and email to them.

My Honda Tak Guna

Like it or not, you’ll probably need to wait for another week before you can send your car for the replacement. Reason – your preferred Honda Authorized Dealer “does not” have such part. Apparently, they need to order the part from Honda Malaysia. The time required to replace the defect airbag is about 6 hours, depending on how busy the centre is. So, remember to bring along the invitation letter, iPad or notebook and power-bank to burn your time while waiting for them to fix this decade-old problem.


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I’m glad you did not suggest as a last resort to contact the Tribunal for Consumer Claims under the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism.
Here if you think they are on the side of consumers, or at least will give them a fair shake, you will be sorely disappointed.

The Tribunal I attended, the judge or whatever they call themselves, seemed more interested in helping the company (a giant multinational from Korea)than the humble consumer, and literally bent over backwards to accommodate the company which had sold a defective product.
So much for consumer rights.

agreed mr bojangles … local tribunal sucks and serves little purpose as far as consumers’ protection is concerned …

we would recommend writing directly to honda japan as a last resort, if you insists … this method is more productive than depending on the tribunal …

cheers …

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