The Australian government has ordered a compulsory recall of 2.3 million cars due to faulty Takata airbags.
Exploding airbags have been linked to at least 23 deaths worldwide, including one in Australia, the government said.
The move adds to a global recall of more than 100 million vehicles – the biggest in automotive history.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission said it was also the largest ever compulsory recall of a product in the nation, and the first to hit cars.
Voluntary recalls conducted previously had not done enough to protect drivers, said Assistant Minister to the Treasurer Michael Sukkar.
“It is the safety of all Australians which is the first priority of this government,” he said on Wednesday.
Mr Sukkar ordered manufacturers to replace dangerous units within two years.
Factoring in previous recalls, about four million cars – comprising two in seven Australian vehicles – had been affected, he said.
t follows a recommendation from the ACCC, the nation’s consumer watchdog, which investigated allegations that carmakers had been refitting faulty airbags with identical devices.
The airbags contain a defect which can cause ageing units to expand too quickly and spray metal shrapnel into cars, harming drivers and passengers.
Japanese manufacturer Takata and its US arm, TK Holdings, filed for bankruptcy last year.
The company is facing billions of dollars in penalties worldwide. Last week, TK Holdings reached a settlement with 44 US state attorneys-general.