The McLaren Artura Already Has a Recall Just a Few Months After Launch

The recall involves a fuel leak, presenting a possible fire risk.

byLewin Day| PUBLISHED Dec 23, 2022 9:00 AM
The McLaren Artura Already Has a Recall Just a Few Months After Launch
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The new McLaren Artura is already subject to a recall notice, just a few short months after launch.

As reported by Automotive News, McLaren's latest supercar has been recalled regarding potential fuel leaks. The root cause of the issue is a faulty nut on the car's high-pressure fuel line, which can allow fuel to escape. As per the recall documents filed with the NHTSA, the recall, the faulty nut can become loose, which disrupts the seal between the flare on the fuel line and the fuel pump outlet.

The issue is of particular concern as the leak occurs near hot engine components, increasing the likelihood of a fire. The precise wording in the defect report is more poetic, however. "If fuel is released in proximity to these components, it could result in thermal activity," reads the document. The notice states nuts are at the highest risk of loosening "during dynamic driving manoeuvres commonly associated with track running."

McLaren identified that the specified cold-formed nuts with rolled threads weren't up to the job. To rectify the issue, the automaker will replace the existing parts with a new fuel line featuring a longer, fully-machined nut with cut threads instead. The new nuts are expected to remain properly torqued without loosening over time.

Notably, McLaren had specified a fully-machined nut in the first place. Due to an impending shortage of fully-machined nuts from McLaren's supplier, the decision was made to use the cold-formed nuts instead in March 2021. The cold-formed nuts passed McLaren's durability tests.

However, in June 2022, it was found they could fail in the field. A new Artura with just 1,000 km (621 miles) on the clock suffered a fuel leak after driving on track. The leak was traced to the left-hand high-pressure fuel pipe, where the nut connecting the line to the pump outlet had come undone. An investigation revealed the nut had not been properly torqued during installation.

McLaren devised a special tightening procedure for the cold-formed nuts, which was intended to solve the problem. This was implemented prior to production vehicles being released to the public. However, in November 2022, another Artura with 2,800 km on the clock suffered a similar leak after on-track use. This vehicle had nuts installed using the special tightening procedure, which nonetheless proved insufficient. This prompted the recall, involving the replacement of the cold-formed nuts with fully-machined parts.

A McLaren spokesperson told Automotive News that the issue affects less than 50 vehicles delivered to customers so far. The rest of the vehicles affected remain at dealerships or are part of the company's marketing and press fleets. Thus far, no injuries have occurred to McLaren's knowledge. The only incidents involved have been those mentioned above, occurring during track running.

McLaren will handle the recall process free-of-charge for affected customers. Just in case, though, if you're test driving an Artura in the next few days, maybe keep an eye out for smoke in the rear-view mirror.

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