Detroit, MI — July 8, 2015 — Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has received attention from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) over outstanding recalls, and a new action reported last month will add to the list of current issues the manufacturer is addressing.
According to an acknowledgement statement featured on the NHTSA website, a suspension issue in certain Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango vehicles has led to 5,608 being recalled. The specific fault concerns the rear lower control arms in these vehicles, which may break off during use.
Both of the models were produced earlier this year, and the concern reportedly stems back to a notification on June 16, when suppliers informed the manufacturer that the materials “may have been incorrectly heat treated.” This led to an attempt at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant to stall shipment of vehicles with faulty parts on that same day. The component manufacturer is listed by the NHTSA as Chassix.
The safety recall report on this issue went into further detail about the heating problems that affected the supplier’s materials.
“The root cause was determined to be a non-standard heat treating process in which the supplier began hand loading materials in the heat treat oven due to a conveyor issue,” the document states. “The supplier’s manual process adversely affected the heat treat profile. The supplier subsequently shipped materials prior to completion of all required material property testing.”
To remedy this condition, the source reports that vehicles will be inspected before control arms are replaced at the car dealer. FCA will reimburse owners for this inconvenience as part of its “longstanding policy” towards these actions.