Hyundai is recalling 354 2020-2021 Accents that were supplied with suspect seatbelt pretensioners that could explode in a crash and may shoot shrapnel into the cabin.
The pyrotechnic type pretensioners could deploy abnormally in an accident, according to documents released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Pretensioners work to pull the seatbelt back when the car is in an accident. That tugs the occupant back into the seat to better control their movement in the cabin during a sudden deceleration allowing the other safety systems, such as the airbags, to work as intended.
Unfortunately, the cause of the problem remains unknown. Hyundai was first made aware of the issue in September 2021, following an accident in which a vehicle occupant’s leg was injured after the seatbelt pretensioner shot metal fragments into the cabin. So far, it is the only injury that Hyundai is aware of as a result of this defect.
The automaker continues to investigate the root cause of the defect but will replace seatbelt pretensioners in recalled vehicles free of charge. The units it removes from those vehicles will be examined for clues about the issue. Hyundai will replace both the driver and passenger side pretensioners and it expects to notify customers to bring their vehicles into dealerships by first class mail starting on February 25.