A Porsche Panamera sports car was destroyed by fire after it was left charging overnight outside a home in Bangkok’s Taling Chan district early Friday morning (March 16).
The fire also partly damaged the home’s living room with initial damage estimated at about 5 million baht, while the car itself was 10 million baht.
Car owner Natthawut Kritaya-ayanont told police investigators that he left the plug-in hybrid car charging overnight and went to sleep at 10 pm.
Before dawn he was awakened by his brother who alerted him after hearing an explosion and the car caught fire.
Mr Natthawut said he bought the car just six months ago. There was no problem either in the power supply and fuel systems of the car.
He said his car was insured with an insurance company which will cover 80% of the car price.
Forensic police inspecting the damaged car and the home’s electrical outlet said they still could not yet determine the cause of the fire as they needed to have information from the car company about the plug-in car.
AA Auto Service or Porsche Thailand’s sales manager Areethat Chalermpong said the destroyed car was imported by an independent car dealer or grey market dealer.
He said he was uncertain if the car has been modified or not.
But he said if it was his company’s cars, electrical engineers would be sent to check the power supply outlet of customer’s home to ensure that it could be used for charging safely.
Car expert Pattanadesh Asasappakij said he suspected the fire might be started from the home’s wiring system rather than the car’s wiring system.
From his experience in car test, he said manufacturer of sports cars would give priorities to safety, particularly the battery and plug-in kits.
The Metropolitan Electricity Authority’s research and development director Chumpot Himacharoen agreed that the fire was not likely to start from the car but the home’s wiring system.
He said overloading of the home cable might be a cause.
He then warned that any wall plug-in for charging hybrid cars must be checked and ensured of safety by engineers.