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My Fiat 500, 2008, 1.2 Pop, 51Kw has had its front left side somewhat crushed.

The body has been fixed for the most part, but the electrician/mechanic tells us he cannot turn on the vehicle in order to test and further calibrate it without installing a new "front left airbag sensor". The car supposedly refuses to turn on unless that part is whole.

We were also told that the car refuses to turn on unless it detects all airbags as present, and since three airbags deployed in the crash (driver, driver knee, passenger). He said he put some resistors in place as a hack, so the car thinks the airbags are there (our priority right now is to make the car driveable, we'll add new airbags later as we obtain them, they're really hard to find in Croatia). Allegedly, this also required the disabling of the belt tighteners via the same hack.

I've looked online, but I cannot find any information as to neither the price nor the appearance of this sensor. Some sources say it's over $600, some $100. Different terms are being thrown around like ECU, Module sensor, airbag sensor, and none lead to anything productive.

I would appreciate it if someone could assist me in telling me what requirements I can still expect before my car is "fixable", and which part it is that I actually need. I looked at some airbag kits, and those contain all three airbags that deployed, plus ECU, plus belt tighteners so this seems like a good deal in most cases, but I have no idea if that also contains the needed sensor.

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In the UK an accident causing an airbag to deploy means that all airbags, igniters, and control module have to be replaced. No alternative, other wise the vehicle is un-insurable, which means you cannot drive it legally on a public road.

  • Interesting, thanks. This isn't the case here. I've since managed to obtain an airbag kit and will be replacing everything but the knee bag, but the sensor is still elusive. – Swader Aug 22 '14 at 6:07

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