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Auto blogFri, 13 Jun 2014
The repairs needed for the faulty airbag inflators supplied by Takata continue to expand. Toyota initially announced a recall of 766,300 vehicles equipped with the bad part on June 11 as a followup to a campaign from 2013. Soon after, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened a preliminary evaluation into five automakers who also used the component in their models. Now, NHTSA has released the official announcement of the latest Toyota recall listing 844,277 affected cars, including the newly added 2003-2004 Pontiac Vibe.
While NHTSA's document didn't include a model-by-model breakdown, General Motors spokesperson Alan Adler estimated to Autoblog that roughly 85,000 Vibes in the US would be covered under the latest recall. Like the rest of the affected models, the airbag inflator could rupture in a crash causing the bag not to work correctly, possibly spraying metal fragments at the occupant.
Toyota spokesperson Cindy Knight told Autoblog that the reason for the disparity between the earlier press release and NHTSA document was that Toyota was continuing to comb through VINs to create a list of affected vehicles. The original number was an estimate of that process at the time. Scroll down to the recall report from NHTSA.
NASCAR driver Tony Stewart is making good use of his nickname Smoke in new videos inspired by the 1970s classic Smokey and the Bandit. The original is one of the quintessential automotive movies of its era with a fantastic combination of slapstick comedy and great car stunts in a Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. If you've never seen it, check it out immediately.
In the new six-part Smoke IS the Bandit web series, Stewart takes on the role of Burt Reynolds' famous character complete with huge mustache. But instead of trying to smuggle cases of Coors beer it's Mobil 1 oil. The series promises to recreate many of the famous scenes from the movie and includes cameos from other NASCAR drivers.
To complete the look, future videos just need a quality replacement for a young Sally Field to ride shotgun. It would also be really cool if Reynolds could make a brief appearance at some point. Scroll down to check out the trailer and the first episode in the series.
Jim Sharp of Elkhorn, Wisconsin needs a red 1967 Pontiac GTO to make his dad's Father's Day, possibly his last one, something extra special.
Back in the '60s, Jim's dad, Ken, drove a cherry red 1967 GTO to California for a job. He met a girl, got married and decided his wife's 1965 Ford Mustang was more fuel efficient than the Goat and the GTO was sold. As the story almost always goes, Ken has had seller's regret ever since.
Jim always meant to find a 1967 GTO and, with his dad's help, restore it. But life got in the way, time slipped by and Ken was recently diagnosed with esophageal cancer and given about three months to live.