NHTSA Defect Investigations for the 2004 BMW Z4

The Office of Defects Investigations (ODI) is an office within the NHTSA which investigates serious safety problems in the design, construction or performance of vehicles. The NHTSA is authorized to order manufacturers to recall and repair vehicles, if the ODI finds a safety issue. NHTSA investigations for the 2004 BMW Z4, both ongoing and closed, are listed below:

  1. INVESTIGATION: BMW AIRBAG LIGHT ILLUMINATION

    NHTSA Engineering Analysis #EA08001

    Component(s): Air Bags
    Air Bags:Frontal
    Air Bags:Frontal:Sensor/Control Module

    Summary: BMW is conducting a safety recall campaign on approximately 200,000 MY04 through MY06 subject vehicles built through 11/30/05 to correct the front passenger seat air bag occupant detection mat. The specific vehicles included in the recall aremy04- 06/ 5-series with standard and sport seats, MY04-06/ X3-series and MY06/ 3-series with sport seats. In addition, BMW will extend the warranty coverage of the passenger seat air bag occupant detection mat to 10-year/unlimited mileage on approximately 120,000 remaining MY04-06 subject vehicles built through 11/30/05. The specific vehicles included in the extended warranty are my 06/ 6 series, my 06/ 3-series with standard seats, MY04-05/ Z4, MY04-06/ 7 series, my 06/ X5, and MY04-06/ 5-series with comfort seats.the average frequency of failures among the extended warranty groups was less than 1/7th of the recall vehicle groups.please see BMW's 08V-384 recall notification for further detailsdepending on seat configuration and vehicle geometry, the occupant detection mat can fatigue during use depending on the manner and frequency of the front passenger's entry and exit.specifically, over time, micro-cracks could develop in the side flanks of the mat causing a broken circuit.a brokencircuit can lead to the deactivation of the passenger air bag and the illumination of both the air bag warning light and the passenger air bag light.

  2. INVESTIGATION: Sticky Steering

    NHTSA Preliminary Evaluation #PE10020

    • Status:
      CLOSED
    • Date Opened: June 28, 2010
    • Date Closed: June 28, 2011
    • Recall: No recall issued

    Component(s): Steering
    Steering:Column
    Steering:Electric Power Assist System

    Summary: ODI has evaluated the sticky steering condition, which included reviews of complaints and warranty claims, interviews and surveys of owners of complaint vehicles, road tests of complaint vehicles, and a review of BMW's engineering and test data.ODI found the sticky steering condition does not result in a significant steering effort, thus the impact on the driver's ability to control the vehicle does not appear to be significant.A safety-related defect trend has not been identified at this time and further use of agency resources does not appear to be warranted.Accordingly, this investigation is closed.The closing of this investigation does not constitute a finding by NHTSA that no safety-related defect exists.The agency will monitor the issue and reserves the right to take future action if warranted by the circumstances.See the attached report for additional information.In addition, during this investigation, ODI became aware of allegations of failure or loss of electric power-assisted steering on the subject vehicles.As a result, ODI is separately reviewing this issue to determine whether additional agency action is needed.

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