Back To Top

BMW Korea to voluntarily recall 42 models after engine fires

BMW Korea, the local importer and distributor of the German luxury carmaker, will voluntarily recall 106,317 units of the 520d sedan and 41 other models due to a faulty exhaust gas recirculation module following a series of BMW engines catching fire, the government said Thursday.

This is the first time in any country for BMW to recall vehicles due to flammable exhaust gas recirculation.

According to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, fires had been set off due to defective exhaust gas recirculation module equipped in the 520d to lower emissions temperature.

The recall concerns 106,317 units, including 35,115 units of the 520d, 14,108 320d and 12,377 520d xDrive manufactured between March 2011 and November 2016.

BMW 520d burnt while driving on an expressway in Seoul on Monday. (Yonhap)
BMW 520d burnt while driving on an expressway in Seoul on Monday. (Yonhap)

Since December, 27 BMW vehicles have reportedly caught fire, out of which 18 units were 520d sedans, prompting concerns among consumers of the second most sold import carmaker here.

South Korea is one of the top selling markets for the BMW 520d, as bigger markets the US, China and Japan prefer gasoline-powered cars.

The BMW 520d was the No. 1 highest-selling import car here by model in 2017, totaling 9,688 units, outperforming the second-place Lexus ES300h by 2,000 units, according to Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.

Owners of the 27 vehicles will receive compensation in cash equivalent to the amount they would have received in the used car market prior to the fire, in accordance with BMW Korea’s policy implemented in 2016.

Vehicles that underwent tuning or repair at a private service centers, and owners who have received compensation through their insurance company are not subject to compensation from BMW as the Korean law currently binds dual compensation.

The faulty module will be replaced with new ones starting Aug. 20, after a safety check up on concerned vehicles, the ministry said.

“We will cooperate thoroughly with authorities and promptly carry out voluntary recalls and make all efforts to restore customers trust. A reasonable compensation will be prepared for the inconvenience caused,” said the spokesperson of BMW Korea. 

By Kim Bo-gyung (