×

New Takata air bag recall widens up to 40M more vehicles, larger than previously reported

A new Takata Airbag recall has increased to up to 40 million vehicles, impacting 23 percent of all U.S. vehicles, the Transportation Department said Wednesday.

The recall also impacts models going back to 2001, the department said, adding that 14 automakers are now impacted.

"Today's action is a significant step in the U.S. Department of Transportation's aggressive oversight of Takata on behalf of drivers and passengers across America," Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement. "The acceleration of this recall is based on scientific evidence and will protect all Americans from air bag inflators that may become unsafe."

This recall is larger than previously reported. On Tuesday, Dow Jones said the recall was expected to come in at 35 million or more airbag inflators.

The Japanese supplier has already recalled 28.8 million inflators in the U.S. affecting roughly 24 million vehicles. The devices are linked to numerous deaths and injuries.

In a statement, Takata CEO Shigehisa Takada said: "This agreement with NHTSA is consistent with our desire to work with regulators and our automaker customers to develop long-term, orderly solutions to these important safety issues, and we are gratified that the NHTSA Administrator has recognized the company's cooperation."

— CNBC's Jacob Pramuk contributed to this report.