BMW Motorrad Australia has again issued a recall on the G 650 GS and G 650 GS Sertao over ongoing issues of the engine stalling.
The issue goes back to September 2015 when the motorcycles were first recalled blaming a software error in the BMS-E engine management ECU.
The latest voluntary safety recall issued through the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission seems to be identical.
“Software errors in the engine control unit (Digital Motor Electronics-E) can cause a faulty setting of the idle controller,” the notice says.
“In some cases, this can result in the engine stalling when it is at idle speed and the clutch is disengaged. If the engine stalls this could potentially cause an accident or hazard to the rider and other road users.”
This latest recall affects motorcycles made from April 2013 to October 2015, which suggests that the previous error was not fixed properly.
It also means the bikes may have been sold to other users now not known by BMW.
So BMW has asked owners to contact an authorised BMW Motorrad dealer, or call the BMW Group Australia Customer Interaction Centre on freecall 1800 813 299 to check if their bike is affected.
Husky owners in limbo
The stalling issue also affects the Husqvarna TR650 Terra and Strada models which were made and sold by BMW at the time.
BMW purchased Husqvarna in 2007 and sold it to Pierrer Industrie, the major shareholder in KTM in 2013.
Now it seems BMW is not co operating with the Husqvarna/KTM group in updating these models even though the only dealerships with the diagnostics systems to reprogram the ECU are BMW dealerships.
Motorcycle rights advocate and G 650 GS Dakar owner Wayne Carruthers says it leaves some 250 Husky owners on Australian roads at the risk of engines dangerously stalling at traffic lights and the riders being rear-ended.
“The Husky situation is an Australian scandal,” he says. “Canada and the USA have had a recall in place since 2015 and they are advising owners not to ride the machines.
“The really silly part is many machines were delivered with old firmware. Some 90% of the problems can be resolved by updates to the last-release version available on the BMW diagnostics system which we have organised for owners.
“However, BMW has been instructing their dealers not to reprogram and ACCC/DOTARS have completely failed to issue a recall despite knowing the details of the problems and the short- and long-term fixes required.”
The problems with the TR650 highlight the broader issue of how models are supported in the marketplace after the sale of a company.
The information published with regard to the agreements between BMW and Husqvarna after the 2013 sale were that the two companies combined would support the TR650 for 10 years.
Recall notices are issued by the manufacturer through a voluntary industry code under the ACCC.
Despite hundreds of recalls by various automotive manufacturers, none has ever been mandatory. All have been issued by the manufacturer.
While any recall is not good news for the manufacturer, it shows that they are largely diligent in fixing problems.
If you believe there is an endemic problem with your bike that should be recalled, contact the ACCC on 1300 302 502.
To check whether your motorcycle has been recalled, click on these sites: