BMW Korea is recalling over 106,000 cars after a group of customers filed a lawsuit against it and one of its local dealers over faulty parts that allegedly led to engine fires.

The recall mainly affects one of BMW's best-selling models in South Korea, the 520d, and the fault is understood to lie within the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system.

According to local reports, 28 BMWs have caught fire on the country's motorways since December 2017 of which 19 were 520ds.

The lawyer for the owners of four of the affected 520ds has lodged a complaint with the Seoul Central District Court against BMW Korea and its dealer Deutsche Motors, seeking damages of KRW5m (US$4,470) per client for safety concerns and vehicle depreciation. 

Other compensation cases have also been filed, claiming twice that amount.

The South Korean importer and distributer of BMW and Mini vehicles promised to complete the hour-long inspections within two weeks by keeping its service network open 24 hours per day. Any defective parts will be replaced free of charge and alternative vehicles will be made available if required, the company said. 

The lawyer has reportedly claimed that unlike equivalent BMW models sold in Europe, the EGRs fitted to the affected vehicles in South Korea were sourced locally but BMW switched to using imported units in 2017.

The Ministry of Land, Transport and Infrastructure is investigating the recall, suspecting the carmaker of being slow to react to the incidents.

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