The recall affects 3-Series vehicles produced between May 1999 and August 2006.
While BMW is still taking part in a regional recall requested by U.S. safety regulators, BMW spokesman Dave Buchko said it decided to recall all of the model year 2000 through 2006 cars potentially affected by the issue. The regional recall requested in June by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration covered both passenger- and driver-side front air bags.
The recall is an extension of last year's recall of 240,000 cars globally for the same issue.
"As a precaution, we just feel now that the right thing to do is just to bring them all in and replace the passenger-side air bag,'' Buchko said.
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The air bags were supplied by Japan's Takata, which has seen more than 12 million vehicles recalled over the past five years for related issues.
Also affected by the regional recall were Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Mazda, Fuji Heavy Industries-owned Subaru, Mitsubishi, Ford and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' Chrysler brand.
Subaru's recall of almost 9,000 cars was national from the start, while Honda's regional recall hit more states than NHTSA had requested.
A spokesman for Nissan said a decision for a broader recall has not been made yet and how many cars in the designated regions were affected was still being determined. A Mitsubishi spokesman said there was no change in status as the issue was still being investigated.
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