More than 150,000 Audi A3, Audi S3, and Audi RS3 models have been recalled throughout the United States, possibly because the passenger-side airbag is off.
The recall announced by Volkswagen Group of America involves no less than 113,164 A3s manufactured between the 2015 and 2020 model years, 9,573 A3 e-trons for 2016-2018, 14,532 S3s for 2015-2020, and 2017 to 2020. 4,147 RS3s manufactured between 2020.
According to Audi, even if someone is sitting in the passenger seat, the passenger occupant detection system (PODS) of the affected vehicle will turn off the airbag.
Interestingly, the A3 models from 2013 to 2019 have been recalled in the same period of 2019. Audi determined that the plug-in contact point at the connector under the seat has been widened, which may trigger a PODS system failure and turn off the passenger airbag.
After filing a complaint against vehicles that have been equipped with the repair program, Audi decided to recall A3, S3, and RS3 again, saying that it believes there are other problems with the PODS system, although it is not yet sure what the problem is.
Audi said it would continue to investigate the root cause and said it was not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this issue. Automakers will notify affected owners of the defects from May 21, and at the same time, they will continue to work on solutions.