Published on May 8th, 2023 | by Subhash Nair


BMWs Built Between 2000 And 2006 Have Deadly Takata Airbags In The US

BMW issues Do Not Drive warnings on three of their older models. What about Malaysia?

BMW of North America has issued a “Do Not Drive” warning for approximately 90,000 vehicles that they built between 2000 and 2006. These vehicles were fitted with airbag inflators sourced from Takata, however it is unclear if this notice affects US vehicles only or if it may apply outside the US as well. For now, the company is only addressing American customers, saying “Owners of affected BMWs that have not had their vehicles inspected and repaired should not consider them safe to drive”.

While this warning was raised for American customers, Malaysians should also check if their older BMW vehicles are affected. By looking for their VIN number (on your grant) and calling 1800 88 3000 to check if your car needs to be taken in for a replacement airbag. BMW Malaysia has a technical campaign related to the Takata airbag recall, so ought to help you out free of charge in this matter.

Here are the models affected in this latest US Do Not Drive warning:

  • 2000-2006 3 Series (E46)
  • 2000-2003 5 Series (E39)
  • 2000-2004 X5 (E53)

In Malaysia, there are many E46, E39 and E53 owners that still daily or semi daily their vehicles. If you are or know someone who has one of these vehicles, please do what’s necessary. In 2022 alone, 5 people were killed in the US as a result of faulty Takata airbag inflators in aging vehicles. Even a non-fatal collision can cause death or serious injury should a faulty inflator deploy. These inflators get more dangerous over time ESPECIALLY in hot and humid climates like ours.


Here’s what Claus Eberhart, BMW North America’s VP of aftersales has to say:

“We cannot state strongly enough just how urgent it is for our customers to take this warning seriously. We know these airbags only become more dangerous over time, which is why we are taking yet another step to get these parts out of our vehicles. Customers must park these vehicles immediately and take a few moments to check if their vehicle is safe for them and their family members to drive.”

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Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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