BMW Recalls S 1000 RR Motorcycles for Engine Failures

High speeds and high temperatures loosen the BMW motorcycle connecting rods.

BMW is recalling 2012 S 1000 RR motorcycles because the connecting rod bolts can loosen at high speeds, leading to sudden engine failures. At least 33 engine failures have been reported globally, BMW said in the required filing with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. No injures have been reported, according to BMW.

The root cause is an anti-corrosion coating used on the bolts, which meant the manufacturing torque specification was too low during engine assembly on the K46. Motorcycles manufactured from September 2011, through 10 April 2012 are affected. Simply put, the connecting rod doesn’t stay connected.

BMW will notify owners, and dealers will replace the connecting rod bolts and apply thread locking compound free of charge as required by NHTSA regulation. The latest BMW safety recall is expected to begin during May 2012. Owners can contact BMW customer at 1-800-525-7417.

Owners can also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline At 1-888-327-4236 or

NHTSA fined BMW $3 million fine earlier this year, after the German automaker failed to comply with requirements of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act that BMW report safety defects to the federal government in a timely manner.

The BMW penalty is the biggest since Toyota Motor paid almost $50 million in fines because of its cover-up of safety issues ultimately resulted recalls of millions of Toyota and Lexus vehicles in 2009 and 2010 for unintended acceleration.

About Ken Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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