— A BMW hybrid battery recall has been issued for more than 26,000 vehicles, with 4,509 of those vehicles recalled in the U.S. and 194 recalled in Canada.
Owners of the following BMW plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are warned not to charge the hybrid batteries until recall repairs are complete.
- 2020-2021 BMW 530e
- 2020-2021 BMW 530e xDrive
- 2020-2021 BMW 530e iPerformance
- 2020-2021 BMW X3 xDrive30e
- 2020-2021 MINI Cooper Countryman All4 SE
- 2020 BMW i8
- 2021 BMW 330e
- 2021 BMW 330e xDrive
- 2021 BMW 745Le xDrive
- 2021 BMW X5 xDrive45e
The Samsung high-voltage battery may not have been manufactured according to specifications. During battery cell production at Samsung, debris may have been able to enter one or more battery cells and cause short circuits. A short-circuit could cause what BMW calls a "thermal event," which is automaker lingo for, "fire."
Between August and September, BMW learned of four hybrid battery fires, sending the automaker to the supplier, Samsung. A review of supplier records found all four vehicles that experienced hybrid battery fires were equipped with battery cells produced during the same period.
BMW and Samsung also discovered there was a higher rate of debris (impurities) that could have entered the battery cells. The manufacturing period for the batteries involved in the fires matched the same period when debris could have entered the battery cells.
Other than the four fire reports, BMW is unaware of any crashes or injuries related to the hybrid battery fires.
In addition to not charging the BMW hybrid battery, the automaker says a driver shouldn't drive in manual mode, sport mode or use the shift paddles.
BMW hybrid drivers may be upset to know the automaker doesn't know how it will repair the problem.
The recall is expected to begin November 23, 2020, but it's possible customers will receive one recall notice letting them know about the recall, then a second notice when repairs are available.
BMW owners may call 800-525-7417.