really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
51,625 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2004 BMW X3 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2004 BMW X3 Owner Comments

problem #13

Sep 012017


  • miles


BMW unable and unwilling to complete recall no. 08V384: Front passenger seat occupant detection mat recall and warranty coverage extension. No parts available, parts not on order, BMW usa not ordering parts for recall. No timeline given, told to call back in two months.

- Harriman, NY, USA

problem #12

Jan 012017


  • 116,000 miles
The airbag light remains on at all times.

- Greenfield Center, NY, USA

problem #11

May 022016


  • miles
Takata recall. The contact owns a 2004 BMW X3. The contact stated that the front passenger air bag warning light flashed and remained illuminated. The dealer and manufacturer stated that the vehicle was excluded from NHTSA campaign number: 08V384000 (air bags). The failure mileage was not available.

- Veradale, WA, USA

problem #10

Sep 182014


  • 104,000 miles


The vehicle in front of me came to a stop with a defective brake light, so we were in traffic so I wasn't going more than 5 mph, so applied the brakes. Unfortunately I still bumped the bumper of the vehicle in front of me which caused the air bag to deploy. When the air bag deployed it caused damage to my arm and face loosening 6 teeth which has since had to be pulled out. There was nothing with the accident that should have caused the windshield to be completely smashed, but it was completely shattered. The emt kept asking me if I hit my head on the windshield and I repeatedly said "no". I can only eat soft food or smoothies now since losing my teeth. I don't remember anything once the air bag deployed leading the emt personnel to feel I lost consciousness. Due to the damage the air bag caused to my vehicle along with accelerating once the air bag hit me in the face casued my vehicle to be a total loss by my insurance adjustor usaa.

- Crestview, FL, USA

problem #9

Sep 012012


  • 55,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 BMW X3. The contact stated that the air bag indicator illuminated on the instrument panel. The dealer stated that the front passenger seat sensor needed to be repaired. The vehicle was not repaired. Two years later, the contact brought the vehicle to the dealer for routine maintenance. The dealer informed the contact that the vehicle was included in NHTSA campaign number: 08V384000 (air bags); however it had expired. The contact was never notified. The vehicle was not repaired according to the recall. The failure mileage was 55,000.

- Lake Mary , FL, USA

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problem #8

Aug 272013


  • 63,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 BMW X3. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign number: 08V384000 (air bags) in the mail and stated that the manufacturer informed her that her VIN was not included in the recall, although she received a recall notice. The manufacturer was notified. The approximate failure mileage was 63,000.

- Athens, GA, USA

problem #7

Apr 052012

X3 6-cyl

  • 123,208 miles


"passenger airbag off" overhead console light is illuminated intermittently even when 140 lb passenger occupies the front passenger seat. Sometimes when passenger moves around in the seat the light will go away. Talked to service advisor at BMW of sterling, Virginia on 4/5/12. They acknowledged four facts (1) it is a passenger seat occupancy detection mat failure, and (2) if the light is on in the event of an accident, the passenger airbag will not deploy no matter how severe the accident is, and (3) the mat in question was replaced on 02-16-2007 at 40,788 miles for an identical problem under manufacturer defect code 6577081500, and (4) there is a recall for the issue, but my VIN is not covered under the recall. They told me they will not cover the previous repair and will charge me $1,290 for it. Research on this web-site shows NHTSA active EA08001 pertains to an identical issue. This is a serious safety defect that the manufacturer has already acknowledged on certain cars and they should cover my car for the same defect as well.

- Ashburn, VA, USA

problem #6

Jan 232012


  • miles
On January 23, 2012 after a whole weekend of downpour rain, I get into my X3 to notice water on the center console (near my cup holder) I look up and notice the water is dripping from the top middle console (where the moon roof control, air bag button and sos call button are located). Not only was it dripping water but the whole area around but it was soaked and wet. After reading about this on-line that other people have and are experiencing this water leak problem, I realized I need to check the other areas people mention they had water leaks. That's when I checked the floor on both the driver and passenger side and to my surprise the driver side had more water than what I could ever imagine, it was drenched. So now that I have all this water in my car it looks like it has caused some problems with my sos button. Without me touching it, it tries to calls and doesn't get a connection. It reads BMW phone inactive and it keeps making a noise that comes through the speakers. I've also noticed that light from the middle top console is not working correctly. I am sure I'm going to end up with a lot more electrical, lighting problems than just these few. This is a problem that needs to be looked into and fix by BMW.

- Oakland , CA, USA

problem #5

May 012011

X3 6-cyl

  • 35,000 miles
Without cause or incident, the passenger seat mat of our airbag system has failed and disabled the entire airbag system for our vehicle. A recall was issued for the same problem for the same model and year of manufacture, but our VIN was excluded from the recall. The repair costs are extraordinary and the manufacturer has refused to offer any assistance. Furthermore, the manufacturer is unable to explain why my particular vehicle was not part of the recall and how the airbag system works. The vehicle has very low mileage and has been well maintained.

- Moseley, VA, USA

problem #4

Jul 202009


  • 74,568 miles
Started the car and the airbag warning lamp came on and will not go off. The airbag has not been deployed and there has not been an accident. The passenger airbag status lamp is also on all the time. I am concerned the airbags are not working. The warning lights have been on for about 2 weeks.

- Abilene, TX, USA

problem #3

Aug 152006


  • 20,347 miles


The contact owns a 2004 BMW X3. While driving at an unknown speed, the air bag deactivation light illuminated on the instrument panel. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and they stated that the air bag sensor was malfunctioning in the front passenger seat. The contact had the same failure repaired two years ago. The current mileage was 93,500 and failure mileage was 20,347. Updated 11/17/08 updated 11/18/08.

- Spring, TX, USA

problem #2

Sep 032008

X3 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,000 miles
TL- the contact owns a 2004 BMW X3. The contact stated that the vehicle was impacted and the rolled over several times but the driver side nor passenger side air bags deployed. The contact sustained injuries to the neck, head and upper back. The vehicle sustained major damage. The current and failure mileage is 68000. Jp updated 10/14/08. The right rear power window would not roll up. Updated 10/16/08.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #1

Aug 052005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,000 miles
2004 BMW 300 series. The consumer states the driver side air bags deployed spontaneously. She was driving 10-15 mph when this occurred. The consumer was not injured. The sensor strip beneath the driver's seat shows an area of impact. The vehicle has never been in an impact; the consumer has always had this vehicle. The vehicle stalled when the airbags deployed. This occurred on a flat residential road. She was at a stop sign and when she started to accelerate, the air bags deployed.

- Riverside, CA, USA

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