Rivian issues its second airbag recall in less than a month

Although it only affects 30 vehicles, it comes several weeks after Rivian recalled over 12,000 trucks and SUVs.

Roberto Baldwin / Engadget

Rivian is issuing a recall for airbag-related issues for the second time in the last few weeks. The EV automaker is notifying affected owners of the R1S SUV (2022-23) about potentially faulty side-curtain airbags.

The recall says one or more of the models’ side-curtain airbags (left or right side) may not have been properly fastened. A report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says the affected models were manufactured at the company’s Normal, IL plant between October 28th, 2022 and January 21st, 2023. Rivian began contacting customers on March 2nd to schedule an inspection and secure them properly. In addition, the company says it will reimburse any owners who already paid for the repair elsewhere.

Although the latest recall only affects 30 vehicles, it’s the second time the automaker has issued an airbag-related recall in less than a month. A March 1st one was much broader, affecting over 12,000 R1T pickups and R1S SUVs (2022) over an airbag deployment issue. In that case, a supplier’s faulty seatbelt sensors, which prevented the front passenger airbags from deploying, were the culprit. However, the vast majority in that group won’t likely have the flaw, as Rivian estimated only one percent of the recalled vehicles were affected.

Although the recalls won’t likely hurt Rivian’s finances significantly, it still isn’t a great look for the young automaker — especially when it recently laid off six percent of its workforce for the second time in less than a year.