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Recall Alert: 700 BMW and Mini Plug-in Hybrids at Risk of Possible Fire

Approximately 700 BMW and Mini plug-in hybrid models will soon be recalled due to an increased potential risk of fire. There was a shocking discovery made by the manufacturer concerning the cars’ high-voltage batteries and the way they were welded. It’s an interesting case, however, it could prove to be a serious threat in some situations.

Which BMW and Mini cars were part of the recall?

The recall is limited to the plug-in hybrid (PHEV) models from both brands and fortunately, only 700 models in the U.S. are currently being recalled. There are many more worldwide as Europe gets other BMW PHEV models.

But, here in the U.S., the following models are being recalled:

  • 2020 Mini SE Countryman
  • 2020-21 BMW X3 PHEV
  • 2021 BMW 330e PHEV Sedan
  • 2021 BMW X5 PHEV

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2020 MINI Countryman PHEV
2020 MINI Countryman PHEV | Mini

What is the recall concerning?

According to Cars.com, the recall being issued is concerning the weld beads on the high-voltage battery. Apparently, loose weld beads could “form a conductive path between the hybrid battery cells,” which in turn can lead to a short circuit and increase the risk of fire upon the initial full charge of the battery. Motor Illustrated also reported on the recall issue, stating that there was an internal issue spotted with the welds on the battery not being completely removed on vehicles that were produced from March 13 to August 6th of this year.

What is being done about the recall?

BMW and Mini dealers will inspect and replace the battery modules for free if needed.

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A charging chord plugged into a car
An electric car (BMW I3) is charged at a charging station | Sven Hoppe/picture alliance via Getty Images

Do the BMW and Mini owners need to do anything else?

BMW and Mini should be contacting the owners regarding the recall starting on October 12. In the meantime, if the owners of the potentially affected BMW and Mini PHEV vehicles would like to get more information on the recall, then they can call the manufacturer at 800-525-7417 or contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888-327-4236. Owners can also check their car’s VIN by plugging it into the Mini “Safety and Emissions” recall page.

For now, owners are being instructed not to charge their cars and to run them on the gas engines instead, accord to a representative from BMW.

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2020 BMW 330e Sedan | BMW
2020 BMW 330e Sedan | BMW

Remember to always follow the instructions where recalls are issued

While it’s easy to overlook the recall notices that you receive in the mail, we always advise you to follow the instructions on the recall notice and get them taken care of as soon as possible. While not all recall notices sound like they need dire attention right away, manufacturers do issue recalls for a reason, and in the case of the aforementioned BMW and Mini PHEV models, this recall is a serious issue.

There can be some serious risk to not only your vehicle but to yourself and anyone riding the car with you as well. On top of mitigating any safety risks, another benefit to getting recalls fixed is that they are done at no cost to the consumer.