Porsche Recall Shows That Even $173,000 Cars Can Sometimes Catch On Fire

If you plunk down $173,000 for a car, you would hope that — in addition to all the luxurious finishes — the vehicle wouldn’t have a defect that could cause your pricey plaything to go up in flames while the rest of the world tries to contain its schadenfreude.

And yet, Porsche has had to issue a recall on 270 Panamera Turbo and Turbo S sedans (these are the $173K ones) and Cayenne Turbo SUVs (model years 2011 and 2012), because a casting defect can lead to a fracture, which in turn can set off a chain reaction that cracks the turbine shaft.

According to NHTSA, this can result in oil being sucked into the exhaust system, causing smoke and possibly a fire.

Porsche says it began looking into a possible problem last October after one of its vehicles went all flame-y in Syria. This was followed by a second fire on an unidentified race track.

It was ultimately discovered to be a problem with the titanium-aluminum alloy turbine wheels. Porsche says it knows of 37 turbine wheel failures worldwide, with three in the U.S., one of those resulting in a fire.

Porsche recalls pricy Panamera Turbo sedan over fire risk [Chicago Tribune]