Nearly 4 million Nissan cars are being recalled due to major safety problems where passenger air bags or seat belts could fail in a crash, leading to serious injuries or fatalities, the AP reports. Nissan North America said 3.2 million cars may have a problem with a sensor that detects if the front passenger seat is occupied and if that passenger is an adult or a child. Defective sensors might incorrectly think that an adult is a child or classify the seat as empty, thus turning off the air bag. The recall applies to certain cars of the following models: the 2016-2017 Nissan Maxima, 2013-2016 Nissan Altima, NV200, LEAF and Sentra, 2013-2017 Nissan Pathfinder, 2014-2016 Nissan NV200 Taxi, Infiniti QX60 and Q50, 2014-2017 Nissan Rogue, 2015-2016 Nissan Murano, Chevrolet City Express and 2013 Infiniti JX35 vehicles.
Nissan is also recalling another 620,000 of its 2013-2016 Sentras. In these cars, the air bag sensor has the opposite problem: It isn't shutting off when it should be. The automaker said the front passenger seat belt bracket may become deformed if it is used to secure a child restraint system. That deformed seat bracket might then cause the air bag not to shut off when it should be off. Nissan has not yet figured out how to fix the problem and is warning owners not to install child restraint systems in the front seats.