Chrysler recalls SUVs with defective frame components

Auburn Hills, Mich. – May 4, 2018 – Chrysler Fiat Automobiles has recalled more than 100 vehicles potentially equipped with defective vehicle frame components, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Administration. The campaign involves 2018 Jeep Wrangler sport utility vehicles produced between Oct. 15, 2017, and Oct. 16, 2017. FCA suspects roughly half of the vehicles referenced in the recall contain the defective parts.
The Defect
The affected vehicles feature frames with rear underbody ladder rails that are prone to premature corrosion and failure. In the event that ladder rail fails, the adjacent left rear seat mount may loosen. Additionally, ladder rail corrosion can weaken the structural integrity of the left rear floor pan. Together, these developments may increase the risk of occupant injury during an accident. However, FCA has yet to receive reports connecting the defective underbody ladder rails to any accidents or injuries.
Timeline of Events
In October 2017, FCA engineers discovered 2018 Jeep Wrangler underbody ladder rails that appeared to differ from other frame components. This finding prompted the FCA Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group to open official investigation into the matter. Over the course of November 2017 and December 2017, the VSRC organization collaborated with personnel from FCA Materials Engineering to assess the galvanized coating used on the underbody ladder rails, as the varnish seemed to exhibit depleted moisture protection capabilities. During this time, VSRC members also met with the Body Engineering team to better understand the initial design for the 2018 Jeep Wrangler.These safety and quality assurance stakeholders reviewed build data and parts receivable timelines, as well, using this information to determine the scope of the problem.
The VSRC group in January 2018 convened with FCA Safety Engineering experts to understand the various hazards created by potentially corroded underbody ladder rails. One month later, VSRC members received confirmation from the engineering group that the parts were indeed at risk of experiencing premature oxidization and could fail as a result. Throughout March 2018, the VSRC organization reviewed production data and determined the number of vehicles potentially affected. On April 5, 2018, the group met with the Vehicle Regulations Committee, and together, these two bodies decided a voluntary safety recall was necessary.
The Solution
FCA has yet to develop a solution to this issue. However, the automaker does intend to reach out to both owners and dealers June 1, 2018, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgement document. Owners in need of assistance prior to the start of the recall can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code U27. Owners can also connect with the NHTSA directly using its Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.
Sean ReyesChrysler recalls SUVs with defective frame components

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective body supports

Auburn Hills, Mich. – April 23, 2018 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 12,500 vehicles potentially equipped with defective body supports, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio sport utility vehicles produced between March 20, 2017, and Feb. 14, 2018.
FCA suspects that all of the vehicles referenced in the action contain the defective parts.
The Defect
Affected vehicles feature A-pillar joints that are not properly sealed to adjacent heating ventilation air conditioning boxes. Consequently, moisture intrusion can occur, resulting in corrosion to the A-pillar and the body control module.
Should oxidization take place, various vehicle components may fail, including the windshield wipers, turn indicators, the horn and the exterior lighting system. Without these features, the likelihood of accident or injury increases dramatically. However, FCA has yet to receive reports connecting the defect to any collisions or injuries.
Timeline of Events
The Alfa Romeo Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group on Sept. 15, 2017, launched an internal investigation after receiving a warranty claim detailing an instance of front wiring harness oxidization. More than one month later, stakeholders for the automaker, an FCA subsidiary, met to discuss the issue and the potential impact. On Oct. 26, 2017, a little over week after the stakeholder meeting, Alfa Romeo received another warranty clam outlining multiple electrical failures. This promoted a more in-depth investigation, which continued into 2018.
Between October 2017 and January 2018, the Alfa Romeo Quality and Product Development Body Engineering team attempted to recreate the outcomes described in the warranty claims in house. This involved testing the vehicle in question for water intrusion. This analysis later revealed the presence of corrosion near where the A-pillar is sealed to the heating ventilation air conditioning box.
Engineers for the automaker concurrently performed water intrusion tests on the nearby body control module, finding similar results. On March 19, 2018, Alfa Romeo concluded its investigation with validation tests performed via handheld wand and end-of-line water analysis.
Members of the Vehicle Regulations Committee reviewed the matter March 23, 2018, and decided that a voluntary safety recall was necessary. Alfa Romeo notified dealers of the impending action March 29, 2018.
The Solution
Alfa Romeo has directed dealers to install additional sealant protections in affected vehicles free of charge, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgment document. The automaker intends to notify owners via first-class mail May 18, 2018. Those in need or more immediate assistance can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code U36. Owners can also reach out to the NHTSA directly using its Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.
Sean ReyesChrysler recalls vehicles with defective body supports

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective oil pumps

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – March 14, 2018 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled nine vehicles potentially equipped with defective oil pumps, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2017 Jeep Renegade sport utility vehicles produced between Nov. 8, 2017, and Nov. 9, 2017, at the Toulca Assembly Plant in Toulca, Mexico, and the Belvedere Assembly Plant in Belvedere, Illinois. FCA suspects just 1 percent of the models named in the action actually contain the defective parts.

The Defect

Affected vehicles could contain 2.4-liter engines with cracked oil pump housings. These defective fixtures may inhibit oil pump operation, eventually leading the feature to fail and cause unexpected engine stalling. The defective component therefore poses a serious safety risk to occupants as it increases the likelihood of an accident. However, FCA has yet to receive field reports connecting the problematic part to any accidents or injuries.

Timeline of Events

On Sept. 5, 2017, engineers at the Fremont, Indiana-based parts supplier Metaldyne BSM discovered a recently assembled oil pump with a crack in its housing, according to an internal recall chronology document given to the NHTSA. Eight days later, Metaldyne alerted FCA. On Sept. 15, 2017, the automaker brought the problem to the Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group, which immediately launched an investigation.

FCA Supplier Control and engineers from the Dundee Engine Plant in Dundee, Michigan and the Saltillo North Engine Plant in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila, Mexico confirmed the problem via material inspection and oil pump traceability studies Oct. 5, 2017. The VRC on Oct. 17, 2017, decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall for approximately 357 vehicles believed to contain the defective oil pumps., according to an NHTSA safety recall report. By this point, FCA had found nine separate engine assemblies that had not been installed in vehicles. The oil pumps in these engines, despite originating from the flawed Metaldyne batch, were not included in the recall.

On Feb. 14, 2018, the VRC discovered that nine potentially problematic engine assemblies were not properly inspected before being installed in vehicles. This led the group to launch another voluntary recall Feb. 15, 2018.

The Solution

FCA will direct dealers to inspect the oil pumps in affected vehicles and replace them if necessary, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgment document. These repairs will be done free of charge. The automaker intends to notify both dealers and owners April 13, 2018. Owners in need of more immediate assistance can contact FCA customer service representatives at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code U18. Owners can also reach out to the NHTSA directly using the Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

Sean ReyesChrysler recalls vehicles with defective oil pumps

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective braking system

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Feb. 20, 2018 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 180,000 vehicles potentially equipped with defective brake transmission shift interlock modules, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects multiple vehicles, including:

  • 2017-2018 Dodge Ram 1500 pickup trucks produced between Jan. 1, 2017, and Jan. 13, 2018.
  • 2017-2018 Dodge Ram 2500 pickup trucks produced between Jan. 1, 2017, and Jan. 10, 2018.
  • 2017-2018 Dodge Ram 3500 pickup trucks produced between Jan. 1, 2017, and Jan. 24, 2018.

FCA suspects 3 percent of the models referenced in the recall actually contain the defective components.

The Defect

Affected vehicles, all of which feature column gear shifting assemblies, come with BTSI systems that prone to dysfunction after long periods of use. Specifically, the plastic housing surrounding the BTSI components swells in high temperatures and causes the locking pin to remain in open position. When this occurs, drivers are free to shift the vehicle transmission out of park without depressing the brake pedal or even switching on the car. This defect poses increases the likelihood of unintended rollaway and therefore poses a serious threat to occupants. However, FCA has not received reports linking the defect to any accidents or injuries.

Timeline of Events

The FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee on Dec. 8, 2017, requested an internal investigation into vehicles produced after Dec. 31, 2016, suspecting that some may suffer from mechanical flaws. Roughly one month later, engineering personnel tested a BTSI solenoid by heating in an oven set to 170 degrees Fahrenheit. The component reached 250 degrees Fahrenheit within five minutes, indicating that problems could development in real-world operational environments. Soon after, members of the VRC requested insight into the production processes behind the development of the BTSI housing and pin components. FCA engineers looked into the matter and found that the fabrication process had remained consistent prior to and following Dec. 31, 2016.

The VRC continued to investigate the matter throughout January 2018, opening a nationwide field review and repair order search. The latter effort yielded three reports that referenced vehicles that suffered BTSI failure and were produced after Dec. 31, 2016. Owners reported being able to shift out of park without pressing the brake pedal or turning the ignition. On Jan. 26, 2018, the VRC found two additional field reports outlining the same issue.

On Feb. 1, 2018, the VRC decided that a voluntary safety recall was required.

The Solution

FCA is currently working on a mechanical remedy, which it will offer free of charge through an owner reimbursement program. The automaker intends to notify both dealers and owners March 30, 2018. Owners in need of more immediate assistance can reach out to the NHTSA directly using its vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

adminChrysler recalls vehicles with defective braking system

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective brake pedal switches

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Feb. 16, 2018 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 39,000 vehicles potentially equipped with defective brake pedal switches, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects multiple vehicles across two brands, including:

  • 2017 Jeep Wrangler sport utility vehicles produced between Aug. 7, 2017, and Sept. 20, 2017.
  • 2017 Dodge Caravan minivans produced between Aug. 7, 2017, and Sept. 18, 2017.

FCA suspects just 1 percent of the models referenced in the recall contain the defective parts.

The Defect

Affected vehicles could contain brake pedal switches prone to malfunction. In the event that these fixtures fail, shifting out of park without depressing the brake pedal becomes possible. This poses a serious safety hazard to occupants. However, FCA has yet to receive reports connecting any accidents or injuries to the defect.

Owners operating vehicles equipped with the defective brake pedal switches have noticed that rear brake lights and interior malfunction indicator lamps illuminate continuously when failure has occurred.

Timeline of Events

Engineers conducting end-of-line production testing on Sept. 11, 2017, at the Windsor Assembly Plant in Windsor, Ontario, Canada encountered a vehicle with an out-of-position brake pedal, according to an NHTSA chronology document. The FCA engineering team immediately notified Multicraft International, the U.S.-based vendor responsible for manufacturing brake switch components. The firm immediately quarantined the potentially defective parts. FCA initiated containment protocol, requesting the staff at the Ontario facility and Toledo South Assembly Plant in Toledo, Ohio to set aside all brake switch parts that arrived from Multicraft.

The vendor inspected its production processes between Sept. 13, 2017, and Sept. 15, 2017, and ultimately found that the brake switches manufactured at its space in Pelahatchie, Mississippi were not properly ratcheted at the minimum required standard of seven pounds. The error occurred due to gas buildup in a plunger mold tool core and resulted in the production of between 90,000 and 180,000 out-of-specification parts.

FCA filed a Product Related Issue report for the defective brake pedal switches Oct. 8, 2017. And, on Oct. 24, 2017, the FCA Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance took up the issue.

The American automaker conducted an extensive read-across investigation throughout the remainder of October and November. The inquiry revealed that the brake switch had been used across multiple models but that it did not pose a serious issue for some due to production quirks or the presence of brake system redundancies. On Dec. 8, 2017, engineering personnel conducted an internal test evaluate the impact of the defective brake switch and determined that drivers with manual vehicles could shift out of park without depressing the brake pedal. A similar test involving a vehicle equipped with an automatic transmission was conducted Dec. 19, 2017, and yielded identical results.

On Feb. 1, 2018, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee reviewed the matter opted to launch a voluntary safety recall. As of Jan. 26, 2018, FCA has received two customer assistance inquiry records and five field reports related to the defective brake pedal switches.

The Solution

FCA intends to direct dealers to replace the brake pedal switches in affected vehicles free of charge, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgement document. The company will notify both dealers and owners March 30, 2018. Owners in need of more immediate assistance can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403. They should use the internal recall reference code U09 when calling. Owners can also reach out to the NHTSA directly using its Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

adminChrysler recalls vehicles with defective brake pedal switches

FCA recalls Jeeps with defective fuel lines

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Feb. 5, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 1,200 sport utility vehicles potentially equipped with defective fuel lines, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk SUVs manufactured between Oct. 10, 2017, and Dec. 10, 2017. FCA suspects just 5 percent of the models referenced in the recall contain the defective parts.

The Defect

Affected vehicles contain supercharged 6.2-liter engines featuring fuel lines prone to separation due to faulty connectors. When disconnected, the lines leak gasoline into the engine compartment, causing stalling and increasing the likelihood of an engine fire. Consequently, these fixtures pose a serious risk to occupants. However, FCA has yet to receive reports linking the defect to any accidents or injuries.

Timeline of Events

On Dec. 14, 2017, FCA received a Product-Related Issue complaint mentioning an instance of fuel line separation that occurred in a 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, prompting the Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group to open an official investigation. FCA collaborated with Martinrea International, the company that provided the fuel line assemblies used in these models, to analyze explore the issue and pinpoint a root cause. The parts provider soon discovered that a misaligned sensor in its insertion machine had resulted in the manufacture of defective fuel lines prone to disconnection.

Between Dec. 21, 2017, and Jan. 2, 2018, engineers at FCA’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit, the production facility from which the defective vehicles originated, reviewed assembly records and identified all of the vehicles potentially equipped with the defective fuel lines. On Jan. 8, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee reviewed the matter and decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall. The automaker notified dealers of the impending action Jan. 11.

The Solution

FCA has directed dealers to inspect the vehicles involved in the recall and, if necessary, replace the fuel lines free of charge, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgement document. The automotive firm intends to notify owners via first-class mail March 2. Those in need of more immediate assistance can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code U02. Owners can also connect with the NHTSA directly using its Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

Sean ReyesFCA recalls Jeeps with defective fuel lines

FCA recalls Jeeps with defective fuel lines

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Feb. 5, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 1,200 sport utility vehicles potentially equipped with defective fuel lines, according to documentation submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk SUVs manufactured between Oct. 10, 2017, and Dec. 10, 2017. FCA suspects just 5 percent of the models referenced in the recall contain the defective parts.

The Defect

Affected vehicles contain supercharged 6.2-liter engines featuring fuel lines prone to separation due to faulty connectors. When disconnected, the lines leak gasoline into the engine compartment, causing stalling and increasing the likelihood of an engine fire. Consequently, these fixtures pose a serious risk to occupants. However, FCA has yet to receive reports linking the defect to any accidents or injuries.

Timeline of Events

On Dec. 14, 2017, FCA received a Product-Related Issue complaint mentioning an instance of fuel line separation that occurred in a 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, prompting the Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group to open an official investigation. FCA collaborated with Martinrea International, the company that provided the fuel line assemblies used in these models, to analyze explore the issue and pinpoint a root cause. The parts provider soon discovered that a misaligned sensor in its insertion machine had resulted in the manufacture of defective fuel lines prone to disconnection.

Between Dec. 21, 2017, and Jan. 2, 2018, engineers at FCA’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit, the production facility from which the defective vehicles originated, reviewed assembly records and identified all of the vehicles potentially equipped with the defective fuel lines. On Jan. 8, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee reviewed the matter and decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall. The automaker notified dealers of the impending action Jan. 11.

The Solution

FCA has directed dealers to inspect the vehicles involved in the recall and, if necessary, replace the fuel lines free of charge, according to an NHTSA recall acknowledgement document. The automotive firm intends to notify owners via first-class mail March 2. Those in need of more immediate assistance can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code U02. Owners can also connect with the NHTSA directly using its Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

adminFCA recalls Jeeps with defective fuel lines

FCA recalls vehicles with defective fire extinguishers

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Jan. 22, 2017 – Chrysler Fiat Automobiles has recalled more than 62,000 vehicles believed to contain defective fire extinguishers, according to documents submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. Per an NHTSA recall acknowledgment document, the campaign affects numerous models across multiple brands, including:

  • 2018 Chrysler Pacifica minivans.
  • 2014-2016 Chrysler Town and Country minivans.
  • 2007 Dodge Caliber sedans.
  • 2009 Dodge Challenger sports cars.
  • 2017 Dodge Charger sports cars.
  • 2015-2016 Dodge Dart sedans.
  • 2004 Dodge Durango sport utility vehicles.
  • 2014-2016 Dodge Caravan minivans.
  • 2014 Dodge Journey sport utility vehicles.
  • 2014-2016 Jeep Cherokee sport utility vehicles.
  • 2017 Jeep Compass sport utility vehicles.
  • 2011 Jeep Patriot sport utility vehicles.
  • 2012 and 2015 Ram 1500 pickup trucks.
  • 2013-2018 Ram 2500 pickup trucks.
  • 2012-2018 Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 pickup trucks.
  • 2014-2017 Ram Promaster and Promaster City pickup trucks.

FCA believes 100 percent of the vehicles named in the action contain the defective parts.

The Defect

The models referenced in the action come equipped with miniature fire extinguishers prone to clogging or breakage due to defective lever and valve assemblies. These items pose a serious threat to owners, especially those involved in accidents where gasoline ignition is likely to occur. That said, FCA has yet to receive reports linking the defective components to any injuries.

Timeline of Events

On Nov. 3, 2017, the FCA Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group learned that fire extinguishers supplied by Walter Kidde Portable Equipment were defective. The FCA Global Regulatory Compliance compared the items to a roster of Kidde fire extinguishers involved in an earlier U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recall and found multiple matches. The automotive conglomerate then retrieved samples of the defective products and sent them to specialists at FCA U.S. Engineering and Mopar, an FCA-owned autoparts organization.

Between Nov. 6 and Nov. 8, analysts at Mopar reviewed the parts and found that production teams were installing them in multiple models across a number of brands. At the same time, the VSRC group launched an investigation into the parts and began evaluating the vehicle populations containing them. On Nov. 10, FCA initiated a yard hold in an effort to stop the production and shipment of vehicles equipped with the Kidde fire extinguishers. Ten days later, an investigator with the VSRC group started combing through historical parts and production information with timestamps dating back to 1973.  Over the next three weeks, employees for FCA U.S. Engineering, Mopar and the VSRC group reviewed individual part identification codes and associated vehicle identification numbers to understand the breadth of the impact of the defect.

On Dec. 18, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall.

The Solution

FCA intends to swap the defective fire extinguishers installed in affected vehicles for new models with metal valves that prevent clogging. The automotive company plans to notify both dealers and owners Feb. 2, 2018. individuals in need of more immediate assistance can contact Chrysler customer service at (855) 271-0773. Callers should use the internal recall identification code T82. Owners can also reach out the NHTSA directly using its Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

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2018 Alfa Romeos Face Recalls over Brake Fluid Contamination

 

Auburn Hills, Michigan – Jan. 16, 2018 – Chrysler Fiat America recently announced a recall of more than 300 2018 Alfa Romeo Giulia sedans, citing concerns over contaminated brake fluid that could degrade over time, according to a filing made with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Specifically, the brake fluid in these vehicles may have come into contact with a type of oil that is not compatible with it, which could cause it to degrade over time and reduce braking performance. That, in turn, could lead to an increased risk of accident or injury.

All 307 of the Giulia sedans in the recall are expected to carry this defect, and were produced from Nov. 14 to Nov. 23, 2017.

The Defect

The brake fluid in affected vehicles were limited to the 10-day period in question, before and after which point the contaminated barrels of oil were not present in the factory where the vehicles were put together.

When the brake system is affected by the contaminated fluid, its components will likely be damaged and lead to a decline in overall performance of the vehicle’s braking capabilities. There would be no way for drivers to determine that this was happening, and could therefore result in a crash before the problem could be addressed, unless there was a brake failure during operation. In that case, a warning light in the dashboard would come on to alert the driver about the issue. However, the recall report called this warning “limited.”

Timeline of Events

Two vehicles being tested as part of a Customer Product Audit failed a routine examination on Nov. 23 when they suffered a loss of clutch pressure. This prompted a small population of vehicles to be put on hold. On Nov. 28, Alfa Romeo officially opened an investigation into the issue, and conducted further lab analysis on the vehicles that failed the audits. This analysis found the contamination of the brake and clutch fluid that led to the recall, and determined through internal records that they had both been manufactured at a time when a pallet of brake and clutch fluid, as well as oil, had been used starting Nov. 13. The next day, all vehicles at the plant were held and tested for oil contamination.

Alfa Romeo was able to create a bypass to only use uncontaminated barrels in further production starting Dec. 5.

Then, on Dec. 13, FCA Italy finally decided to issue the formal safety recall.

The Solution

FCA is encouraging owners to get their vehicles’ brake systems inspected and replaced as necessary, as part of the recall. It will fully reimburse owners who incurred any associated costs with repairing the issues.

Consequently, the automaker asks that owners send original receipts or other proof of payment to confirm the cost of the expense.

Fiat Chrysler will notify owners and dealers about the recall starting on or around Feb. 8, 2018.

admin2018 Alfa Romeos Face Recalls over Brake Fluid Contamination

Chrysler Recalls Millions of Ram Pickups over Rollaway Concerns

 

Auburn Hills, Michigan – Jan. 9, 2018 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles recently announced a recall of more than 1.48 million of its Dodge Ram pickup trucks, from model years 2009 to 2017, over concerns about the vehicles’ potential to roll away in certain situations, according to a filing made with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Specifically, this recall affects Ram trucks of various types, but all of which were equipped with a column shifter, rather than a floor shifter. In certain situations, the shifter can move the transmission out of “park” without a key in the ignition or the brake pedal being applied, which can lead to rollaways and, potentially, vehicle crashes or injuries.

The recall affects nearly 1.483 million Ram trucks, though only 3 percent are expected to carry this defect. The first vehicle group includes model year 2016 and 2017 Rams 3500 cab chassis with a gross vehicle weight rating of less than 10,000 pounds. These vehicles were produced from April 22, 2015.

The second group is model years 2011 to 2017 Ram 4500 and 5500 cab chassis, produced starting on Feb. 3, 2010. The third includes Ram 1500s from the model years 2009 to 2017, produced beginning on May 28, 2008. The fourth includes model years 2010 to 2017 Ram 2500s produced starting Aug. 31, 2009. The fifth includes Ram 3500s from model years 2010 to 2017, produced beginning Sept. 1, 2009. The sixth and final group includes Ram 3500 cab chassis from model years 2011 to 2017, manufactured starting on Feb. 3, 2010.

All affected vehicles had production end dates of Dec. 31, 2016, but there is a lack of field input beyond that date.

The Defect

The issue arises when the vehicle is running and in park, and the brake pedal is depressed. This energizes the vehicle’s brake transmission shift interlock. When the BTSI is energized for too long, it can overheat, causing its housing plastic to grow in size and the grease around it to degrade. That, in turn, could lead to the system’s locking pin to be stuck in the on position. When that happens, the vehicle can be shifted out of park without the brake pedal being depressed again or a key in the ignition.

Unfortunately, this defect would not be in any way detectable for consumers.

Timeline of Events

Beginning March 3, 2017, FCA’s Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance organization opened an investigation into the defect stemming from a 2016 model year Ram with a column shifter being involved in a rollaway incident that led to driver injury.

A few months later, in May, the organization began searching for customer complaints related to the column shifters in Ram trucks and began further reviewing warranty part return data in June. It was then that the potential cause of the defect – the BTSI locking pin – was first suspected.

On June 22, the VSRC was made aware of a test fleet of 240 Ram trucks, in which 72 were able to move the shifter out of park upon replicating the above conditions. Over the next several months – from June to December – the organization visited with suppliers, tested parts and conducted field surveys to determine the scope of the issue.

Finally, on Dec. 18, 2017, FCA determined that it would need to conduct a voluntary safety recall of all affected vehicles.

The Solution

The fix for the defect is currently being developed by FCA, but the company will reimburse owners for the cost of repairing the issue when applicable. It asks that owners provide the receipts for the service so they can be reimbursed in full.

FCA will begin contacting both Ram owners and dealers about the recall Feb. 8, 2018.

adminChrysler Recalls Millions of Ram Pickups over Rollaway Concerns