WASHINGTON - Federal safety officials have opened an investigation into complaints that side-impact airbags in 2000-01 BMW 3-series cars are deploying when they should not.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it has received 11 complaints about the problem. It said an insurance company has reported 13 claims related to such deployments.
NHTSA said it has not learned if BMW of North America Inc. has received any additional complaints. A company spokesman had no details last week.
The complaints to the safety agency indicated airbags deployed when cars went over potholes, bumped curbs or had other minor impacts.
The systems consist of airbags that are mounted in doors to protect the thorax area and inflatable curtains in the roof to protect the head area.