Attorneys for people suing air bag maker Takata and five automakers say the car companies knew that the company's products were dangerous yet continued to use them for years because they were inexpensive.
The allegations against Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Ford and BMW were made in a document filed Monday with a federal court in Miami. The court is handling pretrial evidence-gathering in dozens of lawsuits against Takata and the automakers. The document says the allegations are partly based on auto company documents.
Earlier, the automakers had contended that Takata was the problem because it admitted to covering up the defective inflators, which can blow apart and hurl shrapnel into drivers and passengers.
Takata is expected to enter a guilty plea to one criminal charge at a hearing in Detroit Monday.