BMW recalls 220,000 2002-2003 3 Series cars over an airbag problem. The same issue prompted five other major automakers to recall 3.4 million vehicles, Honda, Infiniti, Lexus, Nissan, and Toyota. The recall applies worldwide with 42,080 of these located in the United States.
For DetroitNews, BMW spokesman Dave Buchko said the automaker knew of no improper “deployments or injuries related to this issue in any BMW.”
The recall is due to a defective airbag from Japanese supplier Takata. The airbag inflator deteriorates over time causing the inflator to rupture when the airbag is triggered, which in turn can cause injury to occupants by pieces of the inflator breaking off and turning into projectiles.
The affect BMW models are the E46 2002-2003 model year 325i, 325xi, 330i, 330xi sedans; 325Ci and 330Ci coupes and convertibles; 325iT and 325xiT Sports Wagons; and M3 coupes and convertibles.
BMW is in the process of notifying owners affected by the recall. Once replacement parts are available, estimated for July, 2013, BMW will notify owners again to contact their dealers and schedule a replacement of the passenger airbag, free of charge.
U.S. auto safety officials are keeping a close eye on the issue.
“The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been in communication with Takata and the affected automakers regarding the recalls. The agency will continue to monitor the situation closely and will take appropriate action as warranted,” the agency said.