Chinese-owned Key Safety Systems Inc. has emerged as the leading bidder for Takata Corp., the embattled air bag maker that’s seeking a buyer after causing the biggest safety recall in automotive history.

An external committee appointed to spearhead Takata’s restructuring recommends Key Safety, the Tokyo-based supplier said in a statement Saturday, adding that no final decision has been made. Key Safety’s main rival in the auction, Autoliv Inc. of Sweden, is more interested in purchasing parts of Takata if the Japanese company files for bankruptcy protection and needs to sell some business units, according to a person familiar with the matter.

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