Fiat Chrysler Recalls More Than 660,000 Ram Pickups for Faulty Steering Linkage

 

London – Feb. 7, 2019 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is recalling more than 573,000 heavy-duty trucks in the U.S. alone, including 2014-2017 Ram 2500 pickups and 2013-2017 Ram 3500 pickups and chassis-cab trucks, due to a serious potential steering issue. The problem stems from a steering-linkage configuration that can catastrophically fail over time. The recall will ultimately affect more than 660,000 heavy-duty trucks worldwide.

The Defect

According to Consumer Reports, the linkage that connects the truck’s steering with its front wheels could separate over time, due to a loose nut. As a result, drivers may experience a loss of steering control. Loss of steering, especially at high speeds, can increase the risk of serious crash and potentially cause injury or even death.

Timeline of Events

According to a safety bulletin released by FCA, the recall follows a December 2018 investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration into steering failures on some Ram trucks. The inquiry began after the agency received two complaints from owners that the linkage between the steering box and the front wheels can separate. In the FCA’s press release, the auto manufacturer announced that it is currently aware of one injury and eight crashes that may have been caused, at least in part, by this issue.

Vehicles recalled include:

  • 2014-2017 Ram 2500 pickups
  • 2013-2017 Ram 3500 pickups
  • 2013-2017 Ram chassis cab trucks

Additional vehicles will be subject to recall in Canada (an estimated 62,734 trucks), Mexico (est. 17,682) and certain markets outside the three biggest North American nations (est. 5,837). The NHTSA has not yet provided more details on this recall, or the sequence of events leading to the announcement.

The Solution

According to reporting from CBS, customers will be advised regarding when they may schedule service to address the potential linkage issue. FCA doesn’t have a specific date yet for owners of the affected trucks to be notified, but stated that it will do so before April 2019.

Dealers will inspect a steering linkage nut: If it’s properly tightened, it will be welded to a sleeve to keep it in place, and if it’s loose, the steering assembly will be replaced outright. The replacement or repair of any faulty parts will be completed at no charge to owners. Owners can contact FCA at 1-800-853-1403 to learn more. They can also reach out to the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA has yet to issue a recall number for this campaign.

Sean ReyesFiat Chrysler Recalls More Than 660,000 Ram Pickups for Faulty Steering Linkage

Fiat Chrysler Recalls More than 220,000 2019 Ram 1500 Pickups Due to Detachable Brake Pedal.

 

Laguna Hills, CA – February 6, 2019 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is recalling more than 193,000 of their newly released 2019 Ram 1500 pickup trucks with adjustable pedals due to a possibility that the brake pedal may detach. The recall is expected to affect roughly 222,000 model-year 2019 Ram 1500 pickups worldwide that are equipped with the adjustable pedals. The 2019 Ram Classic is not affected by this recall.

The Defect

According to Consumer Affairs, affected vehicles have electrically operated adjustable brake pedals to allow drivers of different heights to comfortably position the gas and brake pedals closer to them, or further away from them, depending on their height and leg length. FCA said these Ram brake pedals may detach if drivers adjust them to their rearmost positions. Lack of braking power can potentially lead to a crash, injury and even death.

Timeline of Events

According to a safety bulletin released by FCA, an FCA US investigation researched vehicles that have been equipped with the pedal adjustment feature. The adjustment process, which is activated by a switch and operated with an electric motor, is recommended for use only when the vehicle is stationary as it enables a driver to adjust pedal position.

The investigation found that drivers activating the feature to move pedals to their rear-most position may, in vehicles that have a particular defect in design, cause the integrity of the brake pedal assembly to become compromised which can lead to detachment of the brake pedal.

Additional vehicles will be subject to recall in Canada (est. 22,111), Mexico (est. 783) and certain regions outside the North American market (est. 5,487). The NHTSA has not yet provided more details on this recall or the sequence of events leading to the announcement.

FCA US stated that the company is currently unaware of any related injuries or accidents. However, customers affected by this recall are urged to refrain from using the adjustable-pedal feature until their vehicles are serviced, and also to never use the adjustable-pedal feature while driving. More information can be found in owner manuals.

The Solution

According to the FCA bulletin, dealers will “further secure the brake pedal” at no charge to owners. FCA says it will notify owners of affected trucks. More than 33% of affected vehicles are still at dealerships, and all of those vehicles will be repaired before they are sold. Owners can contact FCA at 800-853-1403. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has yet to issue a recall number for this campaign.

Sean ReyesFiat Chrysler Recalls More than 220,000 2019 Ram 1500 Pickups Due to Detachable Brake Pedal.

Fiat Chrysler Recalls 1.4 Million Vehicles Due to Takata Air Bags

Laguna Hills, Calif. – January 29, 2019 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is recalling 1.4 million vehicles in the U.S. to have their Takata air bag inflators replaced. The action includes 2010-2015 Chrysler 300 sedans, 2010-2011 Dodge Dakota trucks, 2010-2014 Dodge Challenger coupes, 2011-2015 Dodge Charger sedans, 2010-2016 Jeep Wrangler SUVs, and 2010 Ram 3500, 4500 and 5500 trucks.

The Defect

According to Consumer Reports, the Takata air bag inflators use ammonium nitrate to inflate the air bag in the event of a crash. That compound has been found to become unstable over time, especially after exposure to temperature fluctuations and periods of constant high humidity. The instability can cause inflators to explode with violent force during an impact.

If a defective air bag ruptures, it can cause sharp metal fragments to fly outwards directly into the faces of the driver and passengers. This loose debris can significantly increase the risk of serious injury or death for all occupants of the vehicle.

Timeline of Events

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Takata recall is the largest and most complex automotive recall in U.S. history. It covers 50 million air bag inflators in 37 million cars, SUVs, and pickup trucks from 19 manufacturers. At least 15 drivers’ and passengers’ deaths – and more than 250 injuries – have been attributed to the devices.

The recall has been spaced out to allow manufacturers time to acquire and stock replacement parts. Since the degradation of the inflator material occurs over time, the recall addressed the oldest affected cars first as well as those located in areas of temperature fluctuation and high humidity. The recall notices have been since rolled out in phases on a predetermined schedule. The latest rollout includes the Fiat Chrysler vehicles, and these recalls will continue into 2020.

The Solution

FCA says it will let owners of affected vehicles know when they can schedule service. Dealers will replace the passenger-side front air bag inflator free of charge. Owners can contact FCA’s recall information center at 800-853-1403. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Sean ReyesFiat Chrysler Recalls 1.4 Million Vehicles Due to Takata Air Bags

Fiat Chrysler recalls 182,000 2019 Ram 1500 trucks

 

January 25, 2019 – Auburn Hills, Mich. – Fiat Chrysler (FCA) has recalled approximately 182,000 Ram 1500 trucks from the 2019 model year. The problem is due to potential faults in the power steering system, as FCA announced in a bulletin picked up by outlets such as Car Complaints and CBS. Many of the trucks are still on dealers’ lots, limiting the scope of the action.

The large-scale recall involves vehicles that have been produced in recent months. The potential problems won’t completely eliminate a driver’s ability to direct an affected truck, but steering will become much harder, potentially raising the risk of a collision. The recall is one of two issued by Fiat-Chrysler so far this year.

The Defect

In impacted Ram 1500 vehicles, fasteners within the battery circuit may have been secured incorrectly. When the connection loosens, power steering becomes inconsistent and the truck may have problems in over- or under-steer conditions. Due to the danger of driving with compromised steering, the 182,000 vehicles that may have the defect are all included in the recall.

Timeline of Events

The entire recall has occurred on a highly compressed timeline. All the vehicles involved were produced Oct. 25, 2018 or later, according to FCA. The defect was discovered by internal testers rather than inspectors with a regulatory agency. Fortunately, there have been no accidents or injuries reported due to the problem thus far.

Since all the vehicles included in the recall are so new, FCA explained that nearly one-third of the over 182,000 trucks affected have not left dealership lots yet and can simply be repaired before sale. The start date of the recall period has not yet been announced, but it will most likely come within 60 days of its announcement on Jan. 25, 2019.

The Solution

Drivers with one of the over 100,000 affected Ram 1500 trucks should bring their vehicles in to Ram dealerships once the official recall period begins to have the battery fasteners repaired. The process will be provided by the dealerships, with Ram paying the bill. FCA’s phone number for owners of affected vehicles is 800-853-1403 and the automaker is readily available to answer further questions from drivers.

Sean ReyesFiat Chrysler recalls 182,000 2019 Ram 1500 trucks

Fiat Chrysler recalls 182,000 2019 Ram 1500 trucks

January 25, 2019 – Auburn Hills, Mich. – Fiat Chrysler (FCA) has recalled approximately 182,000 Ram 1500 trucks from the 2019 model year. The problem is due to potential faults in the power steering system, as FCA announced in a bulletin picked up by outlets such as Car Complaints and CBS. Many of the trucks are still on dealers’ lots, limiting the scope of the action.

The large-scale recall involves vehicles that have been produced in recent months. The potential problems won’t completely eliminate a driver’s ability to direct an affected truck, but steering will become much harder, potentially raising the risk of a collision. The recall is one of two issued by Fiat-Chrysler so far this year.

The Defect

In impacted Ram 1500 vehicles, fasteners within the battery circuit may have been secured incorrectly. When the connection loosens, power steering becomes inconsistent and the truck may have problems in over- or under-steer conditions. Due to the danger of driving with compromised steering, the 182,000 vehicles that may have the defect are all included in the recall.

Timeline of Events

The entire recall has occurred on a highly compressed timeline. All the vehicles involved were produced Oct. 25, 2018 or later, according to FCA. The defect was discovered by internal testers rather than inspectors with a regulatory agency. Fortunately, there have been no accidents or injuries reported due to the problem thus far.

Since all the vehicles included in the recall are so new, FCA explained that nearly one-third of the over 182,000 trucks affected have not left dealership lots yet and can simply be repaired before sale. The start date of the recall period has not yet been announced, but it will most likely come within 60 days of its announcement on Jan. 25, 2019.

The Solution

Drivers with one of the over 100,000 affected Ram 1500 trucks should bring their vehicles in to Ram dealerships once the official recall period begins to have the battery fasteners repaired. The process will be provided by the dealerships, with Ram paying the bill. FCA’s phone number for owners of affected vehicles is 800-853-1403 and the automaker is readily available to answer further questions from drivers.

Sean ReyesFiat Chrysler recalls 182,000 2019 Ram 1500 trucks

Fiat Chrysler Adds 1.4 Million Vehicles to Takata Airbag Recall

Fiat Chrysler Adds 1.4 Million Vehicles to Takata Airbag Recall

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is adding 1.4 million vehicles in the U.S. to its list of those that should have their Takata airbag inflators replaced. The action includes Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep, and Ram vehicles.

This latest announcement from FCA covers passenger-side front airbag inflators, and is part of the effort by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and automakers to space out the replacement of Takata airbag inflators based on the risk to drivers and passengers.

The goal has been to get replacement inflators to vehicle owners in the highest-risk regions first, and then to the rest of the country later as the supply of replacement inflators grows. The last wave of recalls is scheduled for early in 2020…Read more on ConsumerReports.org

Sean ReyesFiat Chrysler Adds 1.4 Million Vehicles to Takata Airbag Recall

EPA Has Cummins Recall 500,000 Consumer Trucks Over Emissions

 

U.S. – Aug. 29, 2018 – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a massive voluntary recall of certain medium and large trucks and engines. According to The Daily Journal Online, roughly 500,000 models from 2010-2015 are part of this recall, though specific makes have not been made known yet. Cummins produces the engines inside of each of these vehicles.

The Defect

In certain medium to large trucks, the EPA has found a faulty emissions control system (NOx). This is a potentially dangerous emission, contributing to smog and fine particles in the air, that needs to be dispersed or controlled through special internal equipment.

Each truck in the recall has a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system, which controls the NOx system. The real issue is the SCR system itself, as it was found to be less durable than expected. So the emissions are not trackable in the long run and may be giving out faulty readings, saying the NOx is at an acceptable level.

For the repairs, the SCR system will be replaced so it reaches the acceptable level of the minimum full life of the truck. For instance, the medium-sized trucks are expected to last 185,000 miles, or 10 years with the replaced system. The heavy-duty trucks can be considered full-term at 435,000 or 10 years.

According to the EPA, emissions are regulated in all types of non-road and on-road vehicles. This included cars, trucks, trains, airplanes and construction equipment, to name a few. The vehicles and workable equipment need to have one of two types of gas to begin standardizing under the EPA rules – low sulfur gasoline or ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel.

Timeline of Events

On July 31, the official announcement was made for the voluntary recall. Bill Wehrum, EPA Office of Air and Radiation Assistant Administrator, said the recall was a good step in the right direction in how government and industry can work together to ensure the health of the public and environment of the world is secure.

Wehrum stated, “This is the way it’s supposed to work. Our follow-up testing seeks to make sure that pollution controls work throughout an engine’s useful life. And, if they don’t, then companies step up to set things right.”

Earlier this year, there was a similar recall announced by the EPA. About 232,000 Dodge Ram trucks and an additional 3,500 pickups for high NOx emissions.

Through regular government emission and equipment checks, the faulty SCR systems were discovered over the summer. The EPA and the California Air Resources Board found out about the problem and addressed the issue efficiently with the engine manufacturer. Cummins, the global power leader in diesel and alternative fuel engines, is partnering with the EPA over the recall, as they conducted their own tests shortly afterwards. According to the Cummins website, these engines are used in both Nissan and Dodge trucks.

The Solution

Cummins plans to contact all owners of the trucks to offer them complimentary repairs of the SCR system. They will receive instructions about when are where this can be done. Owners are encouraged to contact Cummins directly via their website or helpline: 1-800-286-6467. More information about this recall and other instigated by the EPA can be found on their recall page.

Sean ReyesEPA Has Cummins Recall 500,000 Consumer Trucks Over Emissions

Chrysler Fiat Automobiles recalls 12,000 vehicles over powertrain problem

 

United States – Aug. 26, 2018 – According to Consumer Reports, in a recent string of recalls, the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has announced a recall of 12,779 vehicles. Various Jeep, Dodge, Fiat, and Ram SUVs and cars are involved in this particular recall, which is for a faulty part in the powertrain system.

The Defect

Due to the powertrain system having a potentially broken or a wrongly manufactured circuit board, the problem can connect directly to stalling and starting the vehicle. This is on the drivetrain and does not include the main engine of the car. Powertrain systems are in both manual and automatic vehicles and include transmission, drive shafts and differentials components.

Specifically, inside the circuit board, there is a voltage regular chip that helps control some of the automating controlling and driving of the cars. When this fails, the cars will not start or will stall out after being turned on via ignition. When vehicles stall unexpectedly, there is a risk of an accident or injury from a crash. Issues with starting vehicles can cause drivers to be stranded or without a working car.

Of more than 12,000 vehicles affected, the list includes certain Jeep Renegade, Compass and Grand Cherokee (2018), RAM 1500 and Promaster, Fiat 500x, Dodge Journey, Challenger, Charger and Durango and Chrysler 300x vehicles; the Jeep Wrangler, Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town and Country vehicles (2018-2019) and the Jeep Cherokee and Chrysler Pacifica vehicles (2018-2019).

Timeline of Events

The recall is expected to officially begin September 28 of this year to solve the ignition problem. FCA states they will replace the powertrain control module free of charge for consumers and dealerships.

Also this month, FCA recalled similar 2018-2019 Jeep and Dodge models for brake fluid issues. More than 200,000 vehicles were included in this recall, which required brake fluid to be replaced complimentary to avoid potential bigger issues with the systems. Breaking and steering issues are imperative to fix immediately, due to the higher risks of crashes involved.

In June, a woman in Ohio claimed to have a steering issue with her Jeep, causing it to lockup while she was operating her car. However, FCA and Jeep spokespeople said her particular car did not fall under any current recall.

Alongside the recent recalls, FCA is facing some issue is court as well. According to the Detroit Free Press, Alphons Iacobelli, a former vice president of employee relations for FCA, is facing charges of embezzlement. The company took funds allocated for worker trainers and used them for extraordinary perks, trips and bonuses instead.

Seven other higher-ups have already been convicted and charged in the scandal. The Justice Department and other government entities may be looking further into investigations that could cost FCA millions, if not billions, in court fees and fines. However, further actions are speculative due to FCA being incorporated in the Netherlands and the charges happening in the U.S.

The Solution

Chrysler announced plans to directly notify owners. If auto dealerships and drivers would like more information, they can contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which can be reached via their website, and reference the campaign number 18V524. Costumers who would like to contact Chrysler directly in the US can call their helpline at 1-800-334-9200. For reference, the recall official number from FCA is U87.

Sean ReyesChrysler Fiat Automobiles recalls 12,000 vehicles over powertrain problem

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

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.

adminFCA recalls vehicles with defective fire extinguishers