- Posted April 23, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Erin Burnett OutFront
Mini Cooper Avoids Recall
I recently purchased a 2004 Mini Cooper from a private owner and discovered a major defect (sudden loss of power steering).
Mini of Murray in Utah courteously passed my concern to Mini of North America who declined any relief for this safety issue. Mini international is well aware of the problem and it seems only Mini of Canada is willing to do the right and fair thing for customers. In fact
they issued a full safety recall this year (Jan 2012) citing "...problems with the electronics that control the function of the pump, a failure of the pump
cooling fan, or a loss of power to the pump. A vehicle experiencing a loss of steering power assist would revert to a manual steering mode which would
require greater driver effort, especially at low vehicle speeds. Nevertheless, a loss of steering power assist could ultimately result in a crash causing property damage and/or personal injury." (see
I would have no problems with normal wear and tear items on vehicles; however, Mini has not only recognized the problem but has re-engineered the
part (2002 - 2007 Mini's). I would also not have a problem if it wasn't an actual safety item; however, my wife experienced the sudden loss in a parking lot and almost ran into a pole. Mini of Murray has verified that we do have one of the defective pumps and they acknowledged its current state as defective.
Clearly, this is neither a normal wear-and-tear item nor an anomaly, aberration, or country-unique problem, since NHSTA has an open case (80K mini failures) and an official complaint via the NJ District Court is also
on file (attached, or see http://www.courthousenews.com/2010/10/13/BMW.pdf).
This adds to the growing list of legal claims against Mini of North America and it appears our very own Mini of Murray may be trying their best to absorb the impact.
What is clear is that some Mini owners have gotten relief and some have not due to some financial rubric. Why that is I'm not sure; however what is clear is that safety should not be regulated along lines of inequality or special preference.
Should it become necessary, more details (contact names/numbers, case numbers, history, etc.) will be provided upon request.