BMW Australia Ltd — BMW E46 3 Series MY1997-2000

Identifying features

VIN (Vehicle identification number)
See attached VIN list

What are the defects?

The airbag inflators in these vehicles could allow moisture to enter the unit and degrade the airbag propellant. If this occurs, the properties of the propellant may be changed so that the propellant does not react as intended during an accident, causing misdeployment of the airbag.

What are the hazards?

If a vehicle with an affected airbag is involved in a collision, the airbag inflator could rupture, causing sharp metal fragments to enter the vehicle cabin at high speed and potentially killing or injuring vehicle occupants.

There is also a potential risk that the airbag may underinflate in a collision and may not protect the driver as intended.

What should consumers do?

Owners of affected vehicles should stop driving their vehicle immediately and contact their local BMW dealership or call BMW Australia’s Takata Hotline directly on 1800 243 675 to organise their free urgent vehicle inspection. 

Vehicles will be either towed to the place of inspection or a mobile technician will inspect the vehicle at the consumer’s home or the vehicle’s location. The vehicle should not be driven to the inspection place.

If the vehicle is affected, BMW will offer to arrange a loan or hire car or reimbursement for alternative transportation costs until parts are available for airbag replacement, or until other arrangements can be made. Alternatively, the consumer may discuss the vehicle being purchased by BMW. 

Consumers who are unsure of whether they are affected by this recall can also use the BMW VIN look-up tool at, contact the BMW Takata Hotline directly on 1800 243 675 or contact their preferred BMW dealer. Dealer locations and contact details can be found at

We also recommend you visit to subscribe to receive updates about current and future recalls as they are published.

Further information for consumers is available at 

Traders who sold this product

All Authorised BMW Group Dealers

Where the product was sold
Dates available for sale
  • 21 November 1997 - 30 June 2000

Responsible regulator

Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development is the responsible regulator for this recall.

Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development
Product category