The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched an investigation into BMW’s recall methods. The agency has concerns that the company delayed announcing a recall of more than 30,000 Mini Coopers that failed side-impact performance tests. It appears that BMW of North America LLC’s late-July recall of 30,456 model-year 2014-2015 Mini Cooper vehicles came because of pressure from NHTSA. The agency had conducted Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard tests of two Mini Cooper models in mid-2014, finding a “potential problem” for passenger safety. Also, another Mini two-door hardtop model failed a side-impact test in October, according to the agency. NHTSA said in a statement:
NHTSA is concerned that BMW was aware or should have been aware of the noncompliance with [Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards] and should have taken remedial action on the population of Mini Cooper vehicles identified in [the] recall earlier than it did. It appears from a review of NHTSA’s databases that BMW may have failed to submit recall communications to NHTSA in a timely manner.
The 2014 tests measured spine acceleration in a side-impact crash. The Mini two-door hardtop failed with respect to a female dummy seated in the back of the car. The Model S also failed a side-impact test in July 2015 for a female dummy in the same position, according to NHTSA. In both instances, NHTSA said it believed BMW “should … have been concerned with the compliance of the vehicles,” but the carmaker claimed the test results were due to weight classifications.
Moreover, NHTSA said that BMW had verbally committed to implementing a service campaign to add padding to the rear side panels of 2015 Mini two-door hardtop models, but “did not initiate the service campaign and failed to inform NHTSA of its failure to do so.” The defective passenger detection, which could cause air bag deployment to fail, affected 91,800 model-year 2005-2006 Mini Cooper and Cooper S vehicles and 2005-2008 Mini Cooper Convertibles and Cooper S Convertibles.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.