While both of the all-electric 2022-2023 BMW i4 and iX models are excellent EVs (save for their funky front fascia treatment and sky-high base cost), it doesn’t mean that either aren’t subject to recalls. Unfortunately, it’s a battery fire risk and the advice from BMW is to park both models, built within a nine month span between 2021 and 2022, outside and to not drive or charge them. The issue has been caught, and just 83 vehicles are affected by this recall.
It’s one of those unfortunate risks you take as an OEM that uses outside sources for manufacturing. That supplier might say they are building to your specifications but are actually off. Sometimes, it’s mundane and an inexpensive replacement. Other times, it’s not so cheap. The latter is the case for BMW and its high-voltage battery supplier—Samsung—of the 2022-2023 iX xDrive50 and i4 eDrive40 along with their high performance variants, the iX M60 and i4 M50.
According to the recall notice sent to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the issue stems from the cathode plate that, during the time of production in April at the Samsung’s facility in Korea, “may have been damaged which could have allowed pieces/debris to enter a battery cell.” That could possibly lead to a short circuit within that battery which would result in a “thermal event,” aka: a fire.
By June of 2022, BMW was aware of one incident on a 2022 iX xDrive50 in the U.S. and a 2022 iX M60 outside of the U.S. After looking into the production time of those batteries and production of their EVs, BMW determined that it was a span of nine months and involved the i4 eDrive40 and M40, as well.
The production dates you’ll need to look out for, if you are an owner of the 83 affected iXs and i4s, is between November 22, 2021 and July 30, 2022. You can also check your vehicle’s VIN at the NHTSA website if you don’t know how to locate its build date.
The remedy is to replace the battery modules affected by the debris issue in the cathode. Dealers have already been given notice of the recall and owners have been called about it, but owners will also get mailed notices starting on September 19, 2022. Until the recall is performed, the i4s and iXs affected by this recall must be parked outside, not be driven, and not be charged. The battery modules will also be replaced for free by BMW dealers for those affected vehicles.
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