BMW is recalling the M3 and M4 coupe and sedan for an issue that could cause their rear wheels to completely lose power.
It’s not often that we hear about a recall affecting BMW, the luxury German brand known for making near-bulletproof cars. Typically they produce vehicle components well beyond their necessary tolerances for things like heat and pressure, but it looks like one item might have slipped through on some recent model cars.
This most recent recall comes to use courtesy of Autoblog. For the 2016 and 2017 M3 and M4, certain vehicles are being recalled due to an issue with the driveshaft. Precisely 1,456 M3s and 936 M4s are affected, including 7 of the highest-end M4 GTS coupes.
At issue is a flange on the end of the drive shaft "that was not produced with sufficient long-term durability characteristics,” according to the NHTSA report. The connection between the driveshaft and flange can loosen over time, and eventually disconnect entirely. If that happens, then no power will get to the rear wheels, "resulting in loss of propulsion and increasing the risk of a crash."
Which is typical NHTSA understatement for the possibility that your car will suddenly have no power, which is a terrifying prospect when you’re rocketing down the highway at 70 mph.
The fix is to simply replace the driveshafts with new ones. BMW has already narrowed down which vehicles are affected by this defect, so drivers should be notified with mailings saying whether or not they need to get their cars in for repairs.
The German automaker is aware of no accidents or injuries as a result of this defect, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be careful. If you notice any weird sounds or vibrations, get your car in to be checked right away. With over 400 lb-ft of torque on either car, you’ll definitely feel it if the driveshaft becomes disconnected.
Some people might have already noticed a weird driveshaft issue and gotten their shafts replaced. If that’s the case, BMW will comp you the cost of your repair bill with their apologies. And for those getting new driveshafts with the recall, everything is on BMW’s dime.