Drivers of vehicles caught up in the massive Takata air bag recall should not disconnect the devices while they're waiting for replacement parts, warned AutoNation Chairman and CEO Mike Jackson on Friday.
The defective air bags from the Japanese supplier, which can explode and release sharp metal objects throughout the vehicle, have been linked to at least 11 deaths worldwide and more than 100 injuries.
"There has been a debate whether to disconnect the devices in the meantime. But quite frankly, air bags, even Takata air bags, are saving more lives" than the injuries or deaths they're causing, Jackson told CNBC's "Squawk Box."
"It's a pretty cold-blooded calculation, but it's just the truth," he added.
Jackson's advice is consistent with government recommendations. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that front air bags saved 2,400 lives in 2014 alone.
On Wednesday, as many as 40 million more Takata air bags were added to the already 28.8 million under recall.
Takata's CEO, Shigehisa Takada, said in a statement: "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."