BMW offers free security fix
Highlighted on the BBC's Watchdog programme, the technique allows thieves to program a 'blank' key so the targeted vehicle can be driven away in only a few minutes. BMW says it has been aware of the problem since September 2011, and insists that it is not confined to solely to its models.
The security flaw is applicable to BMWs built before September 2011; the company stresses that models built since are not exposed to the same risk.
BMW says it has a fix ready to install now on the X5 and X6, and that an upgrade for the rest of its range will be ready 'within the next eight weeks'.
The free fix will be carried out by BMW dealers. 'We're funding this out of a 'goodwill budget' between BMW GB and our dealer network,' a spokesman told What Car?.
Customers should call BMW's hotline on 0800 083 4397 if they want to check if their vehicle is affected, or book a car in for the modification.
By John McIlroy
Featured in this story