• Kia is recalling 145,755 Optimas and Rondos.
  • The recall is due to a potentially defective driver's airbag.
  • Kia says recall notices will be mailed to owners in March.

Kia is recalling nearly 150,000 Optima and Rondo models over defective airbags, according to the automaker and the federal government's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Kia says the recall, which affects 145,755 2006-2008 Optimas and 2007-2008 Rondos, was triggered by the clock spring assembly in the driver's side airbag system. According to the NHTSA, the assembly may become damaged over time, placing high resistance on the driver's airbag electrical circuit. The agency says this could cause the airbag to not deploy in the event of an accident.

Despite the potential severity of the problem, Kia says it isn't aware of any accidents or injuries related to the faulty clock spring assembly. Nonetheless, the automaker is recalling the vehicles due to the potential for an increased risk of injury to drivers should the airbag not deploy as designed.

According to Kia, recall notices will be mailed to Optima and Rondo owners whose vehicles may be affected by the faulty clock spring assembly beginning in March. The automaker says drivers will be urged to take their vehicles to a Kia dealer, which will replace the airbag's clock spring assembly free of charge. Kia owners with any questions or concerns can reach the automaker directly at 800-333-4542.

The recall won't be the first to affect the 2006-2008 Optima, a small midsize sedan which rivaled compacts like the Mazda3 and Toyota Corolla and midsize sedans like the Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry. Last year, Kia recalled more than 70,000 2006-2008 Optimas due to a problem with its shift cable that could cause the transmission to roll out of "Park." Once again, the automaker reported no accidents or injuries due to the issue, but recalled vehicles anyway due to the potential hazard.

Kia also recalled the Rondo hatchback in 2009 for a faulty switch, which could cause the model's brake lights to stop working. That recall, which affected nearly 140,000 units, also included the automaker's Amanti sedan, Sedona minivan, and Sorento and Sportage SUVs.

What it means to you: If you own a 2006-2008 Optima or 2007-2008 Rondo, expect a recall notice in the mail.

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Jeffrey Archer is fortunate to have turned a passion for cars into a career. His wide-ranging automotive experience includes work for automakers and dealers in addition to covering the news. When not writing, he spends his time searching for unique cars on AutoTrader.com.

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