Is your vehicle on this list?
Automotive recalls vary greatly in size and scope and, of course, severity. This latest one from BMW is definitely something affected owners need to be aware of if they're not already. The German automaker has issued a recall for 4,509 plug-in hybrid vehicles in the US and 26,900 globally. The reason? A potential fire risk. Documents released by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) state the issue originates from the Samsung battery found in these models, which include the following:
• 2021 BMW X5 xDrive45e (1,228 units)
• 2021 BMW 745Le xDrive (3)
• 2020-2021 BMW 530e, 530e xDrive, 530e iPerformance (132)
• 2020-2021 Mini Cooper Countryman All4 SE (33)
• 2020-2021 BMW X3 xDrive30e (2,441)
• 2021 BMW 330e, 330e xDrive (664)
• 2020 BMW i8 (8)
It turns out debris may be entering the battery cells during the production process, and this could cause a short circuit. BMW says in "rare cases" this could lead to a fire. The good news is that only four incidents have taken place and none caused any injuries or fatalities. The not so good news is that BMW doesn't have a fix yet. This issue was only discovered in August when the first fire happened, in that case, an X5.
BMW was immediately notified and its investigation got underway. By September, the automaker found out about the other three incidents. So, what should affected owners do until a repair is ready?
BMW strongly suggests for drivers not to charge their vehicles or use Sport or Manual modes, and not use the shift paddles, too. As is the case for all recalls, these owners will be notified by first-class mail around the end of November officially informing them of the recall and the proper steps they should take. Dealerships have already been notified. Once a remedy has been found, the necessary repairs will be done free of charge.
In the meantime, these owners should take BMW's and the NHTSA's suggestions seriously. Nobody wants to see their brand-new car catch on fire.