BMW and Mini cars and SUVs are being recalled for a risk of spontaneous combustion.
It’s not entirely spontaneous—there is a reason your Bimmer could catch fire at any moment. The problem has to do with the auxiliary water pump which could stop working at any moment. When this water pump fails, it causes the circuit board to overheat which could lead to a fire hazard.
More often than not, it’ll just lead to a smoldering circuit board that gives off a strong scent of burnt electronics and won’t cause your 650i convertible to go up in a mushroom cloud like a Hollywood action film. Just the same, BMW is asking that owners of affected cars park on the road so if they wake up one day to see the burnt out wreck of their car they at least wake up at all and not die in a house fire that started in the garage.
The NHTSA says 47,806 vehicles are affected in the United States. Affected models include the 2011-2012 550i, 550i xDrive, 550i Gran Turismo, 550i Gran Turismo xDrive750i, 750Li, 750i xDrive, 750Li xDrive, 760Li, X5 xDrive50i, X5 M, X6 xDrive50i, X6 M, ActiveHybrid7, as well as some 2011 X6 Hybrid and 2012 650i Coupes, 650i xDrive Coupes, 650i Convertibles, and 650i xDrive Convertibles.
Certain Mini models are also part of the recall, including certain 2011-2012 Cooper S Convertibles, John Cooper Works (JCW) Convertibles, the Cooper S Countryman, Cooper S Countryman ALL4, Cooper S, JCW Cooper S Clubman, JCW Clubman, Cooper S Roadster, JCW Roadster, Cooper S Coupe, and the JCW Coupe.
A few 2011-2012 Rolls-Royce Ghost vehicles are also affected.
BMW will notify owners of affected vehicles by mail starting June 11, but replacement parts aren’t yet available. Another notification will be sent out to owners once the parts come in to get the water pump and circuit board replaced, which BMW will do free of charge.
Until then, park on the side of the road and sleep tight.