Fire Recall Covers More Rolls-Royce and BMW Turbo Models

BMW is expanding a recall on turbocharged V8 and V12 engines because the turbo cooling pump can overheat, possibly leading to fires. The recall builds on earlier BMW and Roll-Royce safety defect campaigns that also included 4-cylinder turbocharged Mini models. Roll-Royce Ghost models for the 2011 model year are affected; so now are BMW V8 and V12 2011 and 2012 models.

The root cause is a circuit board in the Pierburg-supplied pump that can overheat. Several cases of engine compartment fires and totaled vehicles have been reported, according to an ongoing National Highway Traffic Safety Administration preliminary evaluation.

NHTSA’s Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) has received 12 complaints of engine compartment fire in model years 2007 and 2008 Mini Cooper S vehicles, including 5 alleging  fires resulting in a total vehicle loss. Eight complaints alleged fires had occurred while the vehicles were parked with the ignition off. The complaints show an apparent increasing trend with most complaints received within the past year. In addition, ODI has reviewed field reports submitted as part of Early Warning Reporting data that relate to the alleged defect. A Preliminary Evaluation has been opened to assess the cause, scope and frequency of the alleged defect.

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 Corp 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.

Rolls-Royce owners can call customer relations at 1-877-877-3735 or BMW customer relations 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 http://www.safercar.gov.

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