My 20th gti mk4 was wrecked a while ago and the airbag system was set off. I have worked to rebuild the car and the final problem in my rebuild is the airbags. We bought all new airbags and a new airbag computer, the problem is that the code on the airbag sensors (003) do not match the code on my computer (004). We have tried to use Volkswagen programs to change them but they do not seem to work. I have reached a wall in my rebuild and do not know how to fix this problem. Do I need to buy a whole new set of matching sensors and computer? Or is there a way to make the codes work with each other?

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From: http://wiki.ross-tech.com/wiki/index.php/Airbag_Coding

Crash sensors. The most common cases of incompatible crash sensors are found on the 2002 - 2005 VW Jetta (9M) Chassis. In recent years VW parts departments have recently been carrying and supplying to Mk4 customers the 04 Index of Airbag controllers as a replacement for several different Index numbers. If the vehicle originally had a different Index number such as 1E, then other components in the vehicle like crash sensors may need to be changed in order to make the 04 Index work. The dealership should provide information on any needed additional parts. This is mentioned in TSB # 69-08-04 and these vehicles typically have the following fault codes:

  • 01221 - Crash Sensor Side Airbag; Driver Side (G179): No or Incorrect Basic Setting / Adaptation
  • 01222 - Crash Sensor Side Airbag; Passenger Side (G180): No or Incorrect Basic Setting / Adaptation
  • 01639 - Crash Sensor Side Airbag; Rear Passenger Side (G257): No or Incorrect Basic Setting / Adaptation
  • 01638 - Crash Sensor Side Airbag; Rear Drivers Side (G256): No or Incorrect Basic Setting / Adaptation

You can subscribe to a single day of erWin for $35 and look up the TSB as well as download a number of factory service PDFs. https://erwin.volkswagen.de/erwin/showHome.do. Alternatively some libraries may have access or a friendly service department might be happy to supply the TSB for you.

I hope that helps.

  • Thank you for the help, and would you possibly know where to find 004 index crash sensors. I know they are a rare part to find, but I’ve looked and cannot seem to find any Oct 1, 2018 at 1:58
  • I'll hazard a guess and say the dealer is the only option. I'll do some digging...
    – David Sain
    Oct 1, 2018 at 3:01
  • We have tried a dealer but they don’t want to tell us anything or sell to us because of legal reasons. Oct 1, 2018 at 22:22
  • @NathanManikowski, sorry, but I've been unable to find part numbers of the updated crash sensors. You can read the TSB at clubtouareg.com/forums/f73/tsb-pdf-files-12140.html but it doesn't list replacement part numbers either.
    – David Sain
    Oct 2, 2018 at 4:35

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