BMW issues recall for all 1 Series sold between 2008 and 2010 for potential fire risk

1-series | June 12th, 2010 by 18
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BMW has instructed its dealers to hold delivery on 1 Series models produced between January 2010 and May 2010, based on dealer documents Consumer Reports …

BMW has instructed its dealers to hold delivery on 1 Series models produced between January 2010 and May 2010, based on dealer documents Consumer Reports has reviewed, until a recall can be performed.

BMW advises the repairs can begin immediate on dealer inventory, suggesting a quick resolution. The recall also affects certain 2008-2011 model year 1 Series coupes and convertibles.

The affected vehicles have insufficient clearance between the seat belt tensioners in the B-pillar and the insulating material surrounding it. In the event of a crash, the insulation could become overheated and catch fire.

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Owners will be notified to bring their vehicle to BMW dealers to fix the problem. Dealers will trim the insulating material around the seat belt retractors free of charge.

Owners with questions should contact BMW at 1-800-525-7417.

[Source: Consumer Reports ]

18 responses to “BMW issues recall for all 1 Series sold between 2008 and 2010 for potential fire risk”

  1. FreudeKing says:

    I hate to say it again: I TOLD YOU SO. As was mentioned in previous posts, I said that when a company embarks on cost cutting strategies as vicious as what BMW has done in order to please the shareholders by making it their number 1 priority, problems will start creeping in with quality and reliability.

    This is BMW’s 3rd recall (to my knowledge) this year. We started with the X5 breaking regulations with cables missing, then the huge worldwide bike recall due to brake failures as a result of leaking brake fluide from normal vibrations, and now the fire hazard for the 1 Series.

    You know, with this insulation problem: is it becasue they used cheaper materials to save costs? We have already seen what BP has done with cost saving to please shareholders, not to mention Toyota’s recalls – everyone that I spoke to said they will never drive a Toyota again. We hope BMW will not be stupid enough to compromise our safety in pursuit of profits! (Hint to the management team in Germany who are trying to dream up ways to boost share price!)

    For those of you who have not noticed already: pop down to a dealership and grab yourself the new BMW 5 Series brochure. You might be horrified to note the incredible downgrade to using one of the cheapest magazine paper quality you can find. It is most certainly the thinnest, it will tear even if you flip over the page a little quicker. Compared to previous high quality brochures (which I took as a proud illustration of their products), this is terrible – BMW is even willing to compromise on the quality that the company uses to convince its potential buyers. I don’t want to know to what extend they have compromised on the quality of their cars, especially in areas that a customer cannot see (e.g. cable insulation, wires, tubes, etc.).

    • kcsnyud says:

      AT least they did it pretty early… and that was a pretty picky recall. I mean, look at how many recalls ALL companies issued this year.

      Mercedes recalled more than 100,000 w220 e classes this year. So how doesw it compare?

      • FreudeKing says:

        BMW’s motorcycle recall alone this year surpasses Merc’s 100000 e class recall… not to mention the pending recall of all previous generationg Z4 for steering problems – and you can imagine what the numbers will be.

  2. Max says:

    this article is right except that other than 1 series produced from jan 2010 through march 2010, no other 1 series have been recalled for the insulation problem

  3. Lori says:

    I took my 1-series in yesterday for about the 100th time since I bought it in May 2008. Five warning lights had come on in the previous 24 hours. When they did the key read, they mentioned to me that I also need something done to the tensioner belts because of a recall – and it’s a 2008. So apparently the recall has now been extended. And I guess that’s good.

    That being said, this 2008 BMW 128i has been a headache from day one – or, if you want to be technical about it, day 3. That’s when I noticed my first problem with it – three days after purchase. Since then, there has been a constant barage of issues. None have left me stranded on the side of the road – but the whole point in trading in my twelve year old honda was to prevent having to start making numerous trips to the repair shop. For the amount of time I have spent driving to and waiting at the dealer, THEY should have been paying ME. It’s very sad, because it’s a ton of fun to drive, and that’s making it hard for me to part with. But there is really no excuse for the number of problems I’ve had with this car that I bought brand new.

  4. Lori says:

    Let’s see…the very first thing I dealt with was that on the two or three days after I bought the car, I noticed that the stitching around the steering wheel cover was coming unraveled. I thought that would be a quick easy fix, but actually, they had to order a whole new steering wheel. They said it would be in in a few days. Long story short, it took about 6 weeks.

    In the mean time other small problems started cropping up, such as the ipod adaptor shorting out. That took several trips to the dealer to fix.

    After that, I don’t remember the sequence of events, but I’ve dealt with the tire pressure monitor light coming on regularly – which I guess is good since the tires can’t seem to hold air. I’ve also had to replace three tires. Admittedly all three were due to road hazards, not faulty tires. But the tires run about $380 and have to be special ordered, which means you’re driving around on a bum run-flat while you’re waiting for the tire to come in.

    There have been at least two issues with the air bag that I can remember (the first time it was something about the wiring harness, I think, and the second time they had to replace the airbag control unit).

    When the car started hesitating a bit upon acceleration, I was advised to switch to lower octane gas. I didn’t, and it stopped on its own….for now.

    The power seat and heated seat shorted out, requiring a new driver’s seat module. The windshield washer fluid container cracked.

    Unresolved problems: The engine malfunction light has come on numerous times. The air conditioner randomly makes very loud cracking noises every now and then. The front passenger’s side corner creaks like a 20 year old pick up truck. The turn signal only makes the audible clicking noise to let you know it’s on IF it wants to. The dealer can’t figure out why any of this happens.

    The most recent problem was the illumination of my check engine, traction control, tire pressure monitor and brake warning light all coming on within two days of each other. Turned out this is related to brake assist. It needs a new SOV – whatever that is – and the part won’t be here until Tuesday, at which point I will have been without my car for a full week.

    Hmm…that’s all I can remember off the top of my head. And yet, despite all of this, the car is a BLAST to drive. When it’s not being repaired. The 2011 328i I have as a loaner right now can’t hold a candle to it when it comes to performance. I keep feeling like I’m going to get clobbered merging into highway speed traffic, because I’m so used to downshifting, hitting the gas and GOING. I miss my 128!

    • FreudeKing says:

      That is one terrible car that you have got there. BMW should give you a new car and compensate you for all the problems that you are experiening and your time wasted. I wonder if all these problems could be due to the extremely harsh ride of the 1 Series, especially if you have large rims (excluding the electronic faults).

  5. Lori says:

    FreudeKing – The car didn’t meet the lemon law criteria within the lemon law period – believe me, I looked into it. And unfortunately, the hoops BMW wanted me to jump through to try to get the car replaced were ridiculously and impossibly time consuming and confusing and admittedly, Ias a result, I dropped the ball. I’m sure most car makers would have similar requirements, though – car companies are not in the habit of giving away cars, I guess. All of that said, I would have to disagree with your comment about the harsh ride. It handles like a dream. I’ve never had more fun in a car – when I’m not driving it back to the dealer for the electronic issues, that is. Also, I should point out, I seem to have gotten one of very few bum ones out there. About 99% of the other owners I’ve seen leaving comments in other places have had few if any problems. (I’ve looked for company in my misery. It doesn’t seem to exist.) So I’ve conculded that the luck I’ve had with this car is just my kind of luck. :-)

    • FreudeKing says:

      Well, good to hear that you enjoy your car even though it is giving you all these problems. I hope you will still consider another BMW for your next purchase.

      • Rick says:

        We had similar problems with our 2003 325i. I believe it was 18 visits to the shop for warranty work. They compensated us with a check for lost time after writing to BMW USA. You should do the same.

        We just ordered our 128i. It will take 6-8 weeks to take delivery. What a great driving car! I hope we don’t have your problems though. Been there done that!!

        • Lori says:

          FreudeKing – thank you. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem very likely, unless I can somehow get some satisfaction from BMW.

          Rick – Thank you for the tip! That really would be fantastic – and might be enough to make me consider buying another one. Can you give me a little more information about what you had to do? Did you have to send them copies of all of your service receipts? Did you have to detail every problem in your letter? Some of my problems (iPod shorting out repeatedly, TPM light coming on repeatedly) were more minor in nature, while others were more serious (for example, air bag issues, loss of power to the driver’s seat, engine malufunction light, repeated reprogramming of the computer). I’m concerned that if I site all of them, the major ones will get lost among the others and they’ll think I’m nit-picking.

          • Rick says:


            I made copies of every repair order. My dealer, Reeves Import Motors was a huge help and even went back in their records by hand to retrieve a few. I did list, chronologically all of my service visits detailing the problem and included the copies. I received an immediate response from corporate.

            My complaint was not with my dealer. The dealer is great but I explained a quality, upscale, $37,000 car should not have that many quality issues. Shoot, my 4 year old Mustang GT I traded in had never been in for any problem!

            My 2003 325i was a nightmare of warranty repairs but the best driving car I have ever owned. We just ordered a new 2011 128i. I hope the bugs are worked out by now. Good luck.

  6. helen gammell says:

    i have a 1 series convertible 2008 and i have had many problems including back lights shorting/engine failure that too 3 goes to fix emmisions problems with parts beng replaced. yesterday i went back and they have to take out the gearbox
    it is a nightmare…..

  7. mickael says:

    j’ai acheté une série 1 coupé fin 2009 ,en mars 2010 j’ai eu des problèmes de ratés j’ai été chez bm avec et ensuite plus rien , et depuis 3 jours rebelotte , je retourne chez bm demain il la garde 3 JOURS , par contre j’ai pas l’intention de retourner chez bm pour le même problème , si cela reprend je la change !!!!
    je suis très très dessus de bm , d’autant plus qu’il sagit de ma 1ère
    pour moi aussi c’est un véritable cauchemar , je n’ose même plus la prendre pour roulé , je prend ma 2ème voiture ( une peugeot) qui elle roule comme une vraie neuve malgré c’est 120 000km. Ma bm est une série 1 118D , 143CH.

  8. Mmmbulelo says:

    hi tebogo here m driving 2009 330i BMW E9 sports.problems funny noise when i take off cuming frm front wheels i tooked to delar but unable to sort it out secondly wen i put da key daz a light cuming frm da screen reporting sterwheel is locked to solve dt i to ten da sterwheel several times.

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