Audi recalls first electric SUV in US on battery fire risk | Fin24
  • Pioneer

    Allan Gray was an investment disruptor who brought change to young South Africans.

  • Job Losses

    Government wants ArcelorMittal to sell its Saldanha Bay plant, rather than shut it down.


Audi recalls first electric SUV in US on battery fire risk

Jun 11 2019 21:30
Gabrielle Coppola and Dana Hull, Bloomberg

Volkswagen’s luxury brand Audi is recalling its first all-electric vehicle sold in the US due to a potential risk of a battery fire.

The company issued a voluntary recall of approximately 540 E-Tron SUVs because of a risk that moisture can seep into the battery cell through a wiring harness glitch, spokesperson Mark Dahncke said. The company isn’t aware of any fires or injuries because of the flaw, he said. A total of 1 644 E-Trons have been shipped to the US, and the remainder will be fixed before being handed to customers.

The E-Tron, which went on sale in the US in April, is Audi’s first fully-electric car and one in a wave of contenders from traditional automakers looking to challenge Tesla’s dominance of the segment. While electric vehicles are no more prone to accidents or fires than gasoline-powered cars - and might be less so, according the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - the lithium-ion battery technology that powers them is still evolving, and there is no consensus on safe system design.

Audi said there have been five instances globally where a battery fault light turned on because of the moisture issue. It began contacting E-Tron owners in the US last week, prior to a warning from federal safety regulators, and should have a repair available by August.

"We are applying an abundance of caution as no such incidents have been reported globally,'' the company said in a statement.

Talks with German authorities about a potential recall in Europe are ongoing, Audi spokesperson Udo Ruegheimer said. Some 7 000 E-Tron cars might be affected worldwide, including 2 300 in Germany. Deliveries to China, the world’s biggest market for electric cars, will get underway during the second half of this year.

VW’s biggest profit contributor said it’s offering E-Tron owners loaner vehicles and an $800 cash card to cover gas or incidentals during the recall period, as well as free roadside assistance. There are still E-Trons unaffected by the recall available for sale, it said.

audi  |  companies  |  electric cars  |  industrial


Company Snapshot

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...

Voting Booth

What do you think about private healthcare in SA?

Previous results · Suggest a vote