BMW Recalls 150K Luxury Vehicles Over Faulty Fuel Pumps

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WASHINGTON -- German automaker BMW AG issued recalls involving about 150,000 luxury vehicles on Tuesday to fix faulty fuel pumps that could cause vehicles to lose power.

BMW said it notified the U.S. Environmental Protection Agencythat it would recall 130,000 vehicles from the 2007-2010 modelyears over emissions. The recall covers the 2007-2010 335i;2008-2010 135i, 535i and X6 xDrive35i Sports Activity Coupes; and2009-2010 Z4 Roadster sDrive35i.

All the vehicles have twin-turbo inline six-cylinder enginesfeaturing BMW's direct fuel injection system. BMW said thehigh-pressure fuel pump could fail on the vehicles and owners couldexperience long-crank engine starting times or reduced engineperformance.

BMW said the company will replace the high-pressure fuel pumpand update software, if necessary. BMW spokesman Tom Plucinsky said15,000 to 20,000 vehicles had already received replacement fuelpumps from previous emissions recalls. He estimated that 40,000vehicles would need a new fuel pump.

Separately, BMW recalled 20,800 2008 X5 Sports Activity Vehicleswith inline six-cylinder engines to replace the low-pressure fuelpump. The automaker said if the fuel pump failed, the engine wouldstop running and the driver would lose power assist for steeringand brakes. BMW said the steering and brakes would still work underthose circumstances.

BMW said there have been no reports of accidents or injuriesconnected to the recalls.

An ABC News investigation raised questions about the fuel pumpson Tuesday, and BMW expedited its recall because of the report.

The government's auto safety agency opened an investigation inApril 2008 into possible fuel pump failures on 2007 BMW 335isedans. Owners complained that it took longer than usual to startthe engine or cited "rough engine running."

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration closed itsinvestigation in August 2008, citing 19 complaints and 8 reports ofthe fuel pump failure causing the vehicle to operate in "limpmode." The auto safety agency said only a small percentage ofwarranty claims or complaints indicated engine stall.

BMW told dealers in the spring of 2008 to check the fuel pumpsfor owners who complained about the problem and replace the pumpsif necessary.

NHTSA said in August 2008 that the closing of the investigation"does not constitute a finding by NHTSA that a safety-relateddefect does not exist." It said it would continue to monitorfuture complaints.

BMW said owners would be notified of the recalls in the comingweeks and dealers would fix the vehicles. Owners can contact BMWCustomer Relations at (800) 563-4269 or by e-mail:CustomerRelations(at)bmwusa.com.

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Online: BMW of North America: http://www.bmwusa.com/

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