US opens probe into BMW over Mini side crash test problems

Cropped Photo: BMW Group / MGN

DETROIT (AP) – BMW may be the next automaker in the sights of U.S. safety regulators.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says it’s investigating BMW’s Mini brand because it may have been slow to fix cars that didn’t pass federal crash tests.

At issue are just over 30,000 Mini Cooper and Cooper S models from model years 2014 and 2015, plus the John Cooper Works from 2015.

The agency says in paperwork posted Monday that BMW agreed to recall one model and add padding to another in a “service campaign.” But the campaign wasn’t done. Later, a similar model also failed government side crash tests.

The agency says it’s concerned that BMW knew about side crash problems and should have taken action sooner.

Messages were left Monday for Mini and BMW spokesmen.

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