Drivers, lawsuits and three independent mechanics say a problem with the placement of electronics in certain BMW models could jeopardize driver safety.
Complaints point to the trunk where some BMW model’s place the car’s electronics. Complaints filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and lawsuits filed in New York and California assert water can leak into the trunk causing smoke, fire or electrical failure.
In court filings BMW denies there is a defect or that the alleged defect is a safety hazard.
“We cannot comment on active litigation,” BMW of North America spokesman Kenn Sparks said in an email to the NBC 10 Investigators.
Federal lawsuits name BMW X5’s, X3’s and 5 Series sold between 1999 and 2010 as the class vehicles.
“The vehicles become inoperable and pose a serious safety risk,” according to court filings.
“NHTSA is aware of consumer complaints related to the issue you’ve described,” the government agency behind vehicle recalls said in a statement. “While we cannot comment on matters that the agency may consider as potential subjects for investigation, we carefully monitor consumer complaints and other sources of data to identify potential defect trends and take action if appropriate in carrying out our mission to protect the traveling public.”
There have not been any documented deaths of injuries directly tied to this alleged problem.