In the US, the national automotive watchdog is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). This organization has apparently limitless powers and it has just fined BMW US$10 million, part of a US$40 million civil settlement over BMW’s safety lapses.
Under the settlement, BMW admitted it did not comply with minimum crash protection standards, failed to notify owners of recalls in a timely fashion and failed to provide accurate information about its recalls to NHTSA. Naughty, naughty BMW.
However, as well as being naughty, it would appear that BMW are slow learners as the NHTSA fined BMW US$3 million in 2012 for similar problems.
The vehicles in question are the 2014 and 2015 MINI Coopers, which failed the side-impact crash protection.
The US$40 million settlement includes a US$10 million fine, a requirement that the company spend at least US$10 million meeting the order’s performance obligations, and US$20 million in deferred penalties if the company fails to comply with the order or commits other safety violations.
In an effort to get BMW to clean up its act, the automaker has agreed to retain a government-approved independent safety consultant and disclose updated procedures to NHTSA.