When your Check Engine Light comes on, it’s usually something minor — something that should be taken care of eventually before it becomes a major problem. However, if you drive a BMW, you may want to beware.
After the United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration received complaints of airbags rupturing in Florida and in Puerto Rico, it advised automakers to recall vehicles that had airbags manufactured by Tokyo-based Takata Corp. As a result, German automaker BMW is recalling 1.6 million of its 3-Series vehicles.
However, BMW duly stated that there haven’t been any reported incidents involving the faulty airbags, the company is pulling the 3-Series just to be safe.
The problem with the defective airbags manufactured by Takata is that they can potentially rupture and release shards if deployed incorrectly, which in the event of an accident, could be devastating. Since all the incidents occurred in Florida and Puerto Rico, authorities suspect that humidity and climate may be a factor.
The recall was heralded by an NHTSA investigation, which began last year in June. The administration had received six complaints of ruptured airbags in Florida and in Puerto Rico. Only half of the cases reported injuries, none of which stemmed from BMW owners.
According to a statement from the agency, “Based on the limited data available at this time, NHTSA supports efforts by automakers to address the immediate risk in areas that have consistently hot, humid conditions over extended periods of time.”
BMW isn’t alone in the recalls. Takata’s airbags are also in several other major automotive manufacturers, including Toyota, Mazda, Honda, Ford, Nissan, and Chrysler. These other manufacturers are only recalling a specific amount of a model year, but BMW is taking a more proactive approach and is recalling all of their 3-Series vehicles that came out between 1999 and 2006.
BMW owners should receive a notice in the coming weeks. If concerned, BMW is accepting consumer calls at 800-525-7417.