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153,000 2015-20 Audi A3s Recalled for Passenger Airbag Issue

audi a3 2015 exterior front three quarter oem jpg 2015 Audi A3 | Manufacturer image

For the second time in half a month, Audi has a problem on its hands with front passenger-side airbags. This time, however, it’s a much larger population for a much smaller reach of cars: More than 153,000 Audi A3 sedans and its variants are being recalled for the front passenger occupant detection systems that activate the airbags.

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The issue affects model-year 2015-20 Audi A3 and S3 sedans and hatchbacks, model-year 2016-18 A3 e-Tron hatchbacks, model-year 2017-20 RS 3 performance sedans and model-year 2015-19 A3 cabriolets. The passenger occupant detection system may malfunction and switch off the passenger airbag even when the seat is occupied, increasing the risk of injury during a crash.

A fix is still in development, but Audi will begin sending interim notices to owners May 21; a second notice will be sent when a remedy is found. Owners with further questions can call Audi at 800-253-2834, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit its website to check their vehicle identification number and learn more.

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Patrick Masterson is Chief Copy Editor at He joined the automotive industry in 2016 as a lifelong car enthusiast and has achieved the rare feat of applying his journalism and media arts degrees as a writer, fact-checker, proofreader and editor his entire professional career. He lives by an in-house version of the AP stylebook and knows where semicolons can go. Email Patrick Masterson

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