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A Busy Week for Car Recalls: BMW Joins the List

Following on the heels of Ford’s recall for a half-million defective vehicles, our Chicago personal injury lawyers were concerned to read about BMW’s recall of almost 89,000 Mini vehicles due to an issue with the electronic circuit board in the car’s inner-engineering.

BMW, or Bavarian Motor Works, is a German international luxury automobile-, motorcycle-, and engine-manufacturing conglomerate that owns and produces motor vehicles under the brands BMW, Mini, and Rolls-Royce. Although BMW started out as an airplane-engine manufacturer, it is now one of the world’s most successful automakers; in 2010, the BMW group produced almost 1,500,000 automobiles across all of its brands.

Nevertheless, Mini brand vehicles from model years 2007 through 2011 have been retracted from the market because overheating in the car’s circuit board may lead to fire. The flaw relates to the electronic circuit board that controls the electric auxiliary water pump used to cool the turbocharger. When it’s not working properly, the circuit board may overheat, which is what may cause the flames.

Corporations owe a duty of care to consumers. When they put products on the market that harm customers, those companies may be held legally responsible for damages from those injuries. If a fire starts in the Mini’s engine that causes an accident or injury to the consumer, the BMW group could be held legally responsible for the monetary damages required to compensate the victim.

When consumers are harmed because products are unsafe, an Illinois personal injury lawsuit may arise, and the corporations responsible for production may be made to pay compensatory damages to put the consumer back in the position they were in before the injury occurred. This includes covering medical and hospital expenses, and in more serious cases, compensating the victim for a loss of normal life or lost wages. In some cases when the companies’ errors are egregious, they may also be made to pay punitive damages which serve to punish the company and to send a message to others in the same position to be more careful in the future.

Nevertheless, this isn’t the first time Mini vehicles have faced this problem; last October, Mini brand cars were found to have a similar design issue that led to the recall of about 32,000 vehicles.

According to BMW, owners will be notified next month, and local dealerships will replace the defective water pump for free. Our Illinois personal injury attorneys want people to be especially cautious. If you have one of these types of vehicles, it is best not to drive it until it has been inspected or repaired by a licensed BMW/Mini dealer.

For this particular recall, affected models include: 2007-2011 Mini Cooper S;
2008-2011 Clubman; 2009-2011 Cooper S Convertible; 2011 Countryman; 2009-2011 Mini John Cooper Works (JCW); 2009 Clubman JCW; 2010-2011 Mini JCW Convertible.

If you or a loved one have been injured as a result of a dangerous or defective product, contact an attorney immediately to better understand your rights under the law. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.