Luxury German car manufacturer BMW has been forced to recall some 360,000 cars, a spokesman told AFP today, after tests revealed two separate faults on its vehicles.

BMW recalled 120,000 diesel-engined cars in Europe - including 35,000 in Germany - after discovering the fuel filter on the 1-series and 5-series could continue to operate even after the motor had stopped.

This could in extreme cases lead to a fire, although the company stressed that no such incident had been reported.

The second recall concerned 240,000 3-series vehicles sold in the United States and Canada, produced between 2002 and 2005.

These cars were recalled due to a potential partial malfunction in the brake lights, the firm said, again stating that no accident had been reported due to the fault.