My car needs £16,000 worth of repairs for a water-damaged engine - am I liable?

I purchased a 2018 BMW X6 with a full service history and warranty until 25 October 2020. It has 22,500 miles on the clock. 140 miles into a journey, a regular clunking sound came from the engine. The car had to be recovered. Two weeks later, BMW is asking for images of the air filter intake as they have identified water damage as the damage to the engine. The garage's mechanic has stated that the engine and turbo needs replacing at a cost of between £16 and £17k if I have to pay. I’m not denying that I’ve driven through large puddles of water but I certainly haven’t mistreated the car and am feeling slightly concerned. Where do I stand?

Asked on 23 March 2020 by Huw

Answered by Dan Powell
If you wish to dispute the damage claim, you will need to pay for the vehicle to be transported to an independent BMW specialist so a third party can inspect the vehicle and provide an engineer's report. If the report states the damage was caused by a manufacturing fault then BMW will be liable for the repairs. However, if the damage has been caused by flood water or a large puddle, I think you will need to contact your insurer and make a claim on the vehicle policy. BMW's warranty will not cover this type of water damage and you will sadly be liable for the entirety of the repair costs. For your consumer rights, see:
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