This problem results from the bracket affixing the rear grab handle, which was apparently manufactured incorrectly. As a result, the bracket may puncture the side curtain airbag as it deploys. That's bad news, so Honda is recalling the affected vehicles to have that bracket replaced.
According to the manufacturer, the issue was discovered during its own internal testing procedures, and not because of any reported incidents. The problem only affects Fit hatchbacks from the 2015 and 2016 model years, manufactured between April 11, 2014, and July 2, 2015. Even within those confines, however, the recall is limited only to those in LX trim level and not equipped with a sunroof. That amounts to an estimated 25,367 units in the US - less than a third of the 84,000+ units American Honda sold in the same fifteen-month period.
This is the third recall that has affected the Fit in as many months. Last month saw 143,000 units of the Fit and Civic recalled over a transmission issue. In September, the Japanese automaker called in another 18k Fits over a problem with their ignition coils.
Report Receipt Date: OCT 23, 2015
NHTSA Campaign Number: 15V697000
Component(s): AIR BAGS , STRUCTURE
Potential Number of Units Affected: 25,367
Manufacturer: Honda (American Honda Motor Co.)
Honda (American Honda Motor Co.) is recalling certain model year 2015-2016 Fit LX-trim vehicles manufactured April 11, 2014, to July 02, 2015 and not equipped with a sunroof. In the affected vehicles, the rear grab handle brackets were not manufactured properly, and as a result, the brackets may puncture the side curtain air bags upon their deployment. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) number 214, "Side Impact Protection" and number 226, "Ejection Mitigation".
If the side curtain air bags are punctured upon deployment, the outboard seat occupants may be at a higher risk of injury during a crash.
Honda will notify owners, and dealers will replace the rear grab handle bracket, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin December 4, 2015. Owners may contact Honda customer service at 1-888-234-2138. Honda's number for this recall is JV8.
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
Statement by American Honda Regarding Rear Grab Rail Bracket Safety Recall: 2015-2016 Honda Fit LX
Nov 6, 2015 - TORRANCE, Calif.
Honda will voluntarily recall 25,367 model-year 2015-2016 Fit LX vehicles in the United States to replace the rear grab rail brackets. The rear grab rail brackets in certain Fit LX trim vehicles were not manufactured to Honda's design specifications. In the event of a collision that triggers a side curtain airbag deployment, the rear grab rail brackets may interfere with the airbag deployment, increasing the risk of passenger injury. No market occurrences have been reported related to this issue, which was discovered during internal testing.
Honda is announcing this recall to encourage each owner of an affected vehicle to take it to an authorized dealer as soon as they receive notification of this recall from Honda. Mailed notification to customers will begin in early December, 2015. Additionally, owners of these vehicles can now determine if their vehicles will require repair by going to www.recalls.honda.com or by calling (888) 234-2138.