May 18th, 2009
Since our story last week on the 2007-2009 Cooper S cold start issues we’ve had loads of emails asking some basic questions on the issue and the fix. So in an effort to clear up some of the confusion, here’s the inside info into getting this fix applied to your 2007+ MCS.
First up the PuMA reference we used earlier is simply BMW speak or a file created to track the problems on one specific vehicle. The actual reference number for the timing chain rattle problem is SIM-11-02-07. This file provides information to the service advisor and repair tech for diagnosis, parts required, repair procedures, and warranty reporting requirements.
The first section of the SIM-11-02-07 document deals with verifying the timing chain rattle is occurring and not due to other potential issues.
May 12th, 2009
The Death rattle. It’s a story we’ve been following closely on MF since 2007 and a topic many of you have been extremely concerned about. Last year we posted a lengthy expose on the topic that you can read here. But for owners affected, this news will bring a huge sigh of relief.
For a bit of background on the issue, here’s a description of the issue we posted last year:
The cold start issue has been a common theme popping up in the Faults and Fixes threads on various MINI forums. Specifically, MCS owners complaining about a peculiarly loud engine rattle on start-up. Now the R56 is an â€œinterestingâ€ sounding engine to begin with. The direct fuel injection solenoids give the car a very diesel-esque sound at idle. But this is a very different sound altogether.
BMW has determined that the cold start rattle was/is being caused by the timing chain tensioner (which is in turn powered by an oil-pressurized piston). More specifically the sound is caused when the tensioner piston doesn’t extend all the way (or at all) which then allows the timing chain to come in contact with the guides on the engine cover. continued →
Feb 19th, 2009
Thanks to those tireless consumer advocates (can you feel the sarcasm?) over at the NHTSA, MINI has now issued letters to 2007-2008 R56 MCS owners telling them that they must bring their car in for tailpipe re-fitting. Even if the consumer isn’t interested MINI is now obligated to perform the recall retrofit during the next scheduled service.
Enjoy your short tailpipes! continued →
Feb 18th, 2009
A very interesting story over at BBC sent into us recently concerning Power Steering issues on R50/R53 MINIs.
BMW’s customer service told Heather this wasn’t a common fault, which is surprising because we’ve heard from dozens of other Mini owners who’ve told us they’ve had exactly the same problem, and have had to fork out anything up to Â£800 for the repair.
Not a common fault? Show of hands to those of you that have had power steering problems. As it turns out, we are not alone.
Matt Pike is an independent Mini mechanic, and a supplier of spare parts. He says he can barely keep up with demand for replacement power steering pumps: “At least 60 per cent of our regular customers have all had pumps changed. And we’re getting at least two calls a day from people after power steering pumps because they’re such a big failure. I’d say it’s the most common problem we have with the Minis.”
Jan 22nd, 2009
Since the recent record breaking cold-snap in much of Northern America (and even some parts of Europe) we’ve heard all sorts of MINI owners experiences with their cars. While the vast majority of them have been quite positive we wanted to reach out to those who have had some issues with the extreme cold. At temperatures as low as -30F we expect some issues, so lets hear about them. What have you experienced with this kind of cold? And if you haven’t had issues let us know that as well.
Dec 16th, 2008
We’ve reported that BMW was fighting this recall (for obvious reasons). Now it would seem they’ve finally succumb to the NHTSA’s pressure. Here’s an excerpt from the NHTSA (sorry for the all caps – that’s how they roll in the US government apparently):
BMW IS RECALLING 28,450 MY 2007-2008 MINI COOPER S VEHICLES. THE CENTRALLY LOCATED TAILPIPE EXTENSION PROTRUDES SLIGHTLY BEYOND THE REAR BUMPER. IT IS POSSIBLE FOR INADVERTENT CONTACT TO OCCUR WITH A PERSON’S LEG.
+ MINI Cooper S Recall / NHTSA
Dec 10th, 2008
We had to see this coming.
NHTSA announced on Friday that it will hold a public meeting Dec. 17 and take comments until Dec. 12 on its Initial Decision that model year 2007 and certain MY 2008 Mini Cooper S vehicles contain a defect related to motor vehicle safety. Notified of this, BMW said it would not conduct a safety recall and instead has started a service campaign, which NHTSA has rejected, the notice stated.
The alleged defect is in the vehicles’ exhaust pipe tips. NHTSA said its Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) and BMW “have received numerous complaints indicating that consumers’ legs have been burned while they access the rear cargo area of the subject vehicles via the rear hatchback shortly after the vehicles have been driven. As reflected by the complaints, people accessing the cargo area naturally place their legs at the rear of the vehicle. People are burned as they inadvertently contact either of the two hot exhaust pipe tips while removing items from, or placing items in, the rear cargo area. Some of the burn injuries are significant second degree burns, causing blistered skin or scarring, often in a half-moon shape pattern matching the approximately 2 3/4-inch diameter of the exhaust tips.