• July 24, 2013

Chrysler Won’t Recall Jeeps

jeepThe Chrysler Automotive Group is being defiant because they are flat out refusing to recall close to 2.7 million Jeeps that the United States government says are unsafe.  The government states that these Jeeps are at risk of causing a fire in the event of a rear-end collision.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sent a letter to Chrysler requesting that they voluntarily recall all Jeep Grand Cherokees from 1993-2004 in addition to the Jeep Liberty’s from 2002-2007.They Chrysler Group fired back comments that the Jeeps were all safe and they do not intend to recall any of their Jeeps.  It is rarely heard of when a vehicle company refuses to enforce a recall.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration can request a recall from an auto company but a court order is actually needed in order to enforce it.

David Strickland is the administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and hopes that Chrysler will think about the decision they have made and make the most sensible one.He also adds that the agency has data that shows the Jeeps have a high possibility of having a defect that presents a safety risk.

In August of 2010, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration started an investigation as a request from the Center for Auto Safety.  The Center for Auto Safety is an advocacy group that is based in Washington, D.C.

During the investigation, the NHTSA found that the fuel tanks on the Jeeps have the ability to fail when hit from behind.  The investigation also concluded that the fuel tanks can not only leak fuel but if there is an ignition source, a fire has the potential to occur.The agency went on to say that there was a defect in the design of the Jeep when the fuel tank was placed in back of the rear axle and their height above the road.

In 2005, Chrysler refitted the Jeep Grand Cherokees with the fuel tank in front of the rear axle.  They did the same thing in 2007 with the Jeep Liberty.  However, Chrysler decided against repositioning the fuel tanks on the older models of Jeeps since it would take too much time and money.

Since the year 2000, Chrysler has had 52 recalls.Most of the time an automaker will have no problem complying with recall requests mainly because they want to avoid bad publicity.

This is not the first time that Chrysler has refused a recall request.  In 1996, the NHTSA requested the company recall 91,000 Dodge Stratus and Chrysler Cirrus vehicles for a seat belt defect.  The NHTSA sued the company and the agency won the lawsuit in court.  In 1998, an appeals court revered that decision because the agency had unfairly held Chrysler to a new standard. For all the newest recalls visit Sport Durst DCJ of Durham.

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