BMW has announced the recall of almost 312,000 vehicles in the United Kingdom, as part of an expansion of a previous safety campaign.
As BBC reports, the German automaker is focusing on the 1-Series, 3-Series, Z4 and X1, using both petrol and diesel engines, which were produced from March 2007 to August 2011.
These vehicles are part of an initial recall of 36,410 cars last year over identical issues, and they could stall without any warning to the person behind the wheel. The electrical malfunction also causes brake light failure.
An investigation carried out by the quoted publication found that this flaw could affect more vehicles than initially announced, and reveals one case in which a person was killed, due to this condition.
Narayan Gurung was driving his Ford Fiesta on December 25, 2016, when he swerved to avoid a black BMW 3-Series that had stalled on a dark road. The car hit a tree and the driver lost his life, while the passenger, his wife, was seriously injured.
A BMW 3-Series owner stepped forward and told BBC that his car stalled while he was driving it in December 2016. Mwape Kambafwile contacted the automaker the following day to inform them of the problem, and technicians told him that they had found the fault. “The cable had burnt out and no current was passing through the fuse box”, the man was told.
Strangely enough, Mr. Kambafwile was allowed to take the car home without any warning, nor fixes for that matter, and he refused to drive it, finding out later that not only diesels, but petrol versions of the same vehicle had been previously recalled over the same concern.
“I felt so uncomfortable driving it that we took taxis, I walked to work every day. It was a nightmare, it wasn’t safe enough to drive”, said Mwape, quoted by Telegraph.
BMW appears to have failed to inform the country’s Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency about the problem. Moreover, it seems that the automaker has received complaints related to this issue as early as 2011.
Also, the company already recalled some half a million vehicles in the United States, back in 2013, and in Canada, Australia and South Africa, too.
“We now recognize that there may have been some cases of similar power supply issues in vehicles not covered by the original recall”, BMW recently said. “In order to reassure customers with concerns about the safety of their vehicles, we are voluntarily extending the recall. We are therefore announcing today (May 9, 2018) that we will take the proactive step of expanding the existing UK recall to cover all vehicles potentially affected by the power supply issue.”
Owners of the aforementioned vehicles are expected to hear from the automaker in the next three weeks, informing them of the situation, a spokesperson revealed, according to Telegraph. The BMW official said that the fix will take some two hours and will see dealers replacing a plug.