BMW is recalling 136,188 cars in the U.S. for fuel leaks and engine stalling, according to filings with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Certain 2007–2012 BMW models have faulty fuel pumps with wiring that may be “insufficiently crimped,” which can increase electrical resistance on the pins and melt the surrounding plastic. When that happens, gasoline may leak during refueling or while the car is turning.
The fuel pump itself may fail, leading to stalls or the engine failing to start. The 2007–2011 X5, 2008–2011 X6, 2010–2011 5-series Gran Turismo, 2011–2012 5-series, and 2012 6-series models are affected. Also included are the X5 M, X6 M, and hybrid versions of the X6 and 5-series sedan. The M5, M6, 6-series Gran Coupe, and diesel models are not part of this recall.
According to filings, BMW didn’t think this was a safety defect until it began reviewing warranty claims in June, a full five years after it first discovered the problem when owners began complaining of gasoline odors inside their cars. For years, BMW said it was “sufficient” to let dealers fix the fuel pumps only when customers reported odors or saw the check engine light illuminate, despite offering an extended warranty for the fuel pumps in September 2014.
Months later, BMW was required to recall cars in China, Japan, and Korea for this problem. U.S. owners have reported stalling and an inability to restart their engines, BMW said.