Laguna Hills, CA – August 12, 2019 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles recently announced its recalling more than 21,900 Alfa Romeo Stelvio and Alfa Romeo Giulia SUVs as a result of a fuel indicator issue that may misinform motorists regarding how much fuel is in their tank. Such a misidentification could cause an accident should the vehicle stall or suddenly turn off while in operation. The Chrysler SUV recall is fixable, however, and operators are urged to take their vehicle to their nearest dealer so this problem can be addressed at no cost.
According to filings with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Chrysler will recall 21,915 sport utility vehicles because the body control module, which measures the fuel amount in the tank, may be defective. In vehicles that contain this problem, the gauge reads that the reservoir is fully supplied, when the opposite may be the case.
[This] may cause the customer to run out of fuel even though the indicator shows that there is still fuel in the vehicle,” Chrysler explained in a press release distributed to FCA dealerships.
The following are the potentially defective vehicles in question, including their model years:
- 2018-2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia
- 2019 – 2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio
As noted in the release, there are certain conditions in which the fuel level may read wrong. One such scenario is if the SUV is parked at a 10 degree angle for 30 minutes or more. Depending on how full the tank actually is, the onboard computer may misidentify whether or not it went through a refuel and the fuel level indicator may move higher, suggesting it’s fuller than it actually is.
“Inaccurate fuel indication may increase the risk of an engine stall due to fuel starvation, and can cause vehicle crash without prior warning,” the statement further read.
Timeline of Events
What ultimately led to this Chrysler SUV recall was a communique the company received June 3 from an Italian supplier, informing FCA of multiple reports related to Giulia and Stelvio vehicles stalling. Two days later, Chrysler opened an investigation to see if it could pinpoint the nature of the problem. By June 12, the product development team confirmed the issue was related to faulty software, which caused the instrument panel to misidentify the amount of fuel remaining in the reservoir.
Approximately five weeks later, Fiat Chrysler determined that a voluntary recall was necessary and went through the proper channels to inform the NHTSA. The government agency confirmed the automaker’s intentions Aug. 5. Neither NHTSA nor Chrysler is aware of any accidents or injuries that trace back to this issue. Only one warranty has been filed through July 19.
The automaker says it will notify registered owners of the Chrysler SUV recall starting Sept. 13 by first-class mail. Owners are strongly encouraged to have their vehicles checked out by an area dealer so the body control module software can be properly updated. Chrysler believes that virtually all of the 21,900-plus SUVs included in the recall likely have the suspected defect in question.
For more information on this or any other automotive recall, visit MotorSafety.org. Check our section on all the most recent Chrysler recalls as well. You can also take a look at recalls grouped by month.