Volkswagen has yet to issue recalls for 11 million VW, Audi, Porsche, and Seat diesel vehicles equipped with emissions-test-cheating software. But if you own a gas-powered VW Jetta or Golf, or perhaps an electric E-Golf from model-year 2015, you might get a jump on all the recall fun.
That's because Volkswagen is recalling some of those vehicles to fix a problem with the front passenger airbag. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the passenger frontal airbag in some VW models may not work due to a poorly built occupant detection system.
The occupant detection system determines whether a passenger is sitting in the front seat and turns the frontal airbag on or off accordingly. In some Jetta, Golf, and E-Golf models, however, an electro-magnetic coil inside the occupant detection system may not have been built with the proper insulation. As a result, it can turn the airbag on or off inaccurately, or it may completely fail. If it's off while a passenger is located in the front seat, the airbag won't deploy during a crash.
The good news is that, despite the glitch, the status of the passenger airbag will be correctly displayed on the "Passenger Airbag OFF" indicator. And if the device completely fails, the airbag monitoring light should alert the driver.
Also good news: Volkswagen knows of no accidents or injuries linked to the problem.
The recall affects the following models:
- 2015 VW Jetta vehicles built between September 8, 2014 and November 28, 2014
- 2015 VW Golf vehicles built between April 2, 2014 and December 3, 2014
- 2015 VW E-Golf vehicles built between July 26, 2014 and October 18, 2014
All told, some 993 vehicles in the U.S. are affected.
Volkswagen says that it will send recall notices to owners in November. After receiving those notices, owners will be able to take their vehicles to VW dealerships, where the occupant detection module will be replaced at no charge.
If you have questions, you're encouraged to call Volkswagen customer service at 800-893-5298 and ask about recall #69L6. You can also contact NHTSA at 888-327-4236 and ask about safety campaign #15V627000.