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BMW NA/BMW Canada order “stop sale” on gasoline-powered new and used motorcycles


Official statement from BMW NA, received Wednesday, 20 September 2023:

“BMW of North America is dedicated to providing vehicles to our customers that meet their expectations. To ensure that our vehicles are of the highest industry standards, BMW performs ongoing testing and evaluation.

Following a recent quality analysis, BMW is pursuing measures to further evaluate the material used in a component of its motorcycle evaporative system, which may not have been produced to material specifications.

As a result, BMW of North America is issuing a temporary, voluntary stop sale for all new and pre-owned BMW motorcycle models in dealer inventory, except for the CE 04.

This temporary stop sale is not safety related and BMW owners may continue to ride their motorcycles as normal.”

NOTE: The above is BMW’s official statement. The below is my opinion, and mine alone, and is not the position of any institution or entity.

There has been a lot of discussion—much of it marginally informed at best—on the internet regarding this stop sale order. I want to draw attention to the part where BMW says it is “not safety related” and we can all keep right on riding our motorcycles … the ones we’ve already bought, anyway.

My guess (and that’s all it is) here is that BMW discovered a problem that affects multiple generations of motorcycles, and right now they themselves are not 100% sure exactly which bikes are affected. They know for sure it’s their current inventory, thus the stop sale order. This way they can figure out how to fix the problem with the evap system and get that fix out to dealers to implement on bikes currently in their inventories, paving the way for sales to resume. No doubt what would follow is a voluntary recall to fix the problem on bikes that were sold before they issued the stop sale order.

The United States and Canada have similar emissions regulations, so my guess (and again, that’s all it is) is whatever the problem with the evap system is, BMW wants to remain compliant with current regulations. It’s likely the quickest thing for them to do was stop sales.

I’ll keep you updated as more information becomes available. For now, the statement above is the best info we have, and I got it directly from BMW NA.

Update 21 Sept 2023

“Voluntary” in this context means the stop sale order was not issued by any regulatory agency, but rather by BMW itself. It does not mean the dealers affected can opt out of the order.

Unconfirmed sources have stated some dealers expect the stop sale to last a maximum of three weeks, meaning it would end in early October 2023.

5 thoughts on “BMW NA/BMW Canada order “stop sale” on gasoline-powered new and used motorcycles

  • 9 days and counting. I’ve been in contact with several Motorrad dealers and they all tell the same story: no communication whatsoever from BMW Motorrad (Canada, in my case) re. the Stop Sales order, and any remedy/protocol/plan and timeline(s). Nothing. Crickets. Absolutely horrendous brand management, dealer engagement, and customer service practice(s). Technical bulletins and recalls are commonplace in the motorcycle and automotive sphere. Their management of this issue is, however, beyond poor. It borders on negligence.

  • There’s no “paving the way for sales to resume” in late September – at least not in Canada. We have about 4-5 weeks left of riding – in most places: the best 4-5 weeks of the year, frankly. For me, that time is now lost. This will take weeks, at the very least, for somebody to define a solution and protocol for solving, at the dealer level. BMW will lose all their sales for the remainder of 2023 – to (maybe) resume in Spring of 2024. I was supposed take delivery of a new R1250 GSA last week. I’ll walk away and demand my deposit returned if this is not addressed by end of this week, and will buy a Ducati Multistrada V4: my second choice. Somebody in leadership better get fired for this debacle.

    • This is an excellent point, Gregory, and certainly one I did not think of when I posted the story. Good luck getting your bike!

  • So what is forcing the stoppage? That is some big $$$$$ being lost. Just because.
    Do the bikes not meet EPA emissions requirements?
    I.E. like VW TDI a few years ago.

    • All the information we have is included in this article.

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