S. Korea to launch probe into BMW over alleged delayed recall

August 3, 2018
At least 28 BMW cars have caught fire this year in South Korea, according to media reports

South Korea will launch an investigation into BMW, a minister said Friday, over an alleged delay in recalling more than 100,000 cars following a spate of engine fires.

At least 28 BMW cars have caught fire this year in South Korea, according to media reports, forcing the German automaker to issue a recall last week to fix a faulty component that was aimed at reducing emissions from .

But angry customers have launched a class-action lawsuit against the company alleging that it was slow to respond to the fires, prompting the authorities to probe the matter.

"We will investigate the fires of BMW vehicles thoroughly and transparently", Transportation Minister Kim Hyun-mee said, adding that the probe would examine whether the company had reacted properly to the accidents.

"If any problems are found, we will take stern measures", Kim said in a statement.

The minister also urged BMW owners to respond to the recall immediately and refrain from driving their vehicles until further notice.

There was no immediate response from BMW Korea.

The German titan has been sued by 17 customers filing for damages worth $4,500 each, Ha Jong-seon, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said, adding that dozens of other owners were expected to join the .

Meanwhile thousands of other BMW drivers have joined an internet community to explore the possibility of taking legal action against the carmaker, Yonhap news agency reported, paving the way for more lawsuits to be filed in the near future.

If the government probe finds that the recall was delayed, BMW could be forced to pay a fine of up to 70 billion won ($62 million) under South Korean law.

The recall applies to 42 models, all with diesel engines.

In South Korea, six out of 10 imported cars are from Germany.

BMW sold nearly 39,000 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce cars in the first six months to June this year, according to the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.

Explore further: BMW expands UK car recall again

Related Stories

BMW expands UK car recall again

May 18, 2018

German car manufacturer BMW on Friday expanded a British safety recall for another 88,000 vehicles because of a fire risk.

German officials order recall of Mercedes diesel vans

May 24, 2018

Automaker Daimler says it is being told to recall models of its Mercedes-Benz Vito delivery van by Germany's motor vehicle authority, which has ruled that the vehicle's diesel emissions controls do not meet legal requirements.

Germany's BMW expands UK car recall

May 9, 2018

German car manufacturer BMW on Wednesday said it was expanding a British recall on faulty vehicles whose engines are at risk of suddenly cutting out.

Daimler to recall 3 million vehicles to ease diesel doubts

July 18, 2017

German automaker Daimler will voluntarily recall 3 million Mercedes-Benz brand cars with diesel engines in Europe to improve their emissions performance, the company said Tuesday, in the wake of widespread public debate over ...

BMW sued in US over diesel emissions

March 28, 2018

German luxury carmaker BMW has been sued in the United States over "defeat devices" installed in tens of thousands of vehicles in order to cheat diesel emissions tests, lawyers for the plaintiffs said Tuesday.

Recommended for you

After a reset, Сuriosity is operating normally

February 23, 2019

NASA's Curiosity rover is busy making new discoveries on Mars. The rover has been climbing Mount Sharp since 2014 and recently reached a clay region that may offer new clues about the ancient Martian environment's potential ...

Study: With Twitter, race of the messenger matters

February 23, 2019

When NFL player Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice, the ensuing debate took traditional and social media by storm. University of Kansas researchers have ...

Researchers engineer a tougher fiber

February 22, 2019

North Carolina State University researchers have developed a fiber that combines the elasticity of rubber with the strength of a metal, resulting in a tougher material that could be incorporated into soft robotics, packaging ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.