More than 46,000 cars, including almost 5,000 in the UK, have been affected by Ford and BMW recalls with the blame being places on production process problems.
EV Owners, including around 1,800 in the UK, were advised not to charge their cars and to operate them in ‘EV Auto’ mode only after Ford found that, in some cases, batteries were faulty and overheating while charging, causing fires. The company recalled more than 20,000 Kuga plug-in hybrids in August as a result of the findings.
The manufacturer has now announced A fix for the problem has now been announced. It will involve the entire drive battery pack being replaced, with work being carried out in late December. However, the recall is expected to take until late March to complete.
Following Ford’s recall, BMW also identified almost 3,000 plug-in hybrid models in the UK that could be at risk of a battery fire, taking action by recalling vehicles and suspending delivery of affected new models as a preventative measure. A total of 26,700 vehicles are said to be involved worldwide, of which around 2,930 are either with UK customers or awaiting delivery.
The BMW recall affects plug-in hybrid versions of the 3, 5 and 7 Series, the X1, X2, X3 and X5 SUVs, the 2 Series Active Tourer, and the Mini Country-man PHEV, built between January 20 and September 18, 2020. It also affects i8s built this year.
BMW released an official statement on the matter, explaining that particles may have entered the battery during the production process, which could lead to a short circuit within the battery cells when fully charged, possibly leading to a fire.
A solution to the fault is being worked on, however, until then, drivers have been instructed to not charge their vehicle, not to drive in manual or sport mode, and to not use the shift paddles.
Ford also acknowledged that the issue had arisen in the production of the car’s battery, which is sourced from an external supplier: “The root cause has been identified as a battery cell contamination issue in our supplier’s production process”.
The two recalls come a year after Kia recalled more than 5,000 Niro hybrid and plug-in hybrid models due to an electrical relay that could overheat.