Chrysler agrees to recall 2.7 million Jeeps for fire hazards
After refusing a government request two weeks earlier, the automaker will conduct a recall but denies its vehicles are unsafe.
"Chrysler Group’s analysis of the data confirms that these vehicles are not defective and are among the safest in the peer group," the company said in a statement. "Nonetheless, Chrysler Group recognizes that this matter has raised concerns for its customers and wants to take further steps, in coordination with NHTSA, to provide additional measures to supplement the safety of its vehicles."
Two weeks earlier, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration requested the automaker recall the 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee and the 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty for fuel tank leaks and fires related to rear-end collisions. At least 51 people have died in crashes where the vehicles ignited after being hit from behind, the federal agency said in an unusually detailed, 13-page report that tracked crash data from Chrysler and competitor vehicles. While the vehicles met all U.S. safety laws, NHTSA said that more drivers died from fuel-related fires in these Jeep models than in any competitor's models.
"The design defect is the placement of the fuel tanks in the position behind the axle and how they were positioned, including their height above the roadway," NHTSA said.
In total, 44 people died in 32 rear-end crashes that resulted in fires in 1993-2004 Grand Cherokee models, with seven fire-related fatalities from five rear-end crashes involving 2002-2007 Liberty models, NHTSA said. Twenty-seven fuel leaks in rear-end crashes that did not result in deaths were reported for both models.
Chrysler denied the report's calculations and said the vehicles had no safety problems. The deaths occurred less than once per million miles, which was below average among similar SUVs, Chrysler said on June 4.
However, NHTSA presented a different argument, claiming that only the Suzuki Sidekick, which was produced in small numbers and was discontinued in 1998, scored worse than the Jeep models in fire-related fatalities from rear-end collisions. In total, Chrysler made about 4 million Libertys and Grand Cherokees between 1993 and 2007.
Dealers will "provide an upgrade to the rear structure of the vehicle" to better protect the tank from leaking. An official recall date and schedule has not been announced.
Two days after Chrysler refused the recall request, it recalled 630,000 Jeeps to fix airbag deployment problems and transmission oil leaks.
In November 2012, Chrysler recalled 744,822 Jeep Liberty and Grand Cherokee SUVs in the U.S. for airbags and seatbelt pre-tensioners that could inadvertently deploy or activate.
It might just be me Frosty, but I feel you derive an almost perverse pleasure in seeing an American company having to recall a vehicle. Of course Toy has never (willingly) issued a recall.
May I suggest you go and polish the wheel covers on your Toys?
Tell that to the families of the 51 people that died as a result of the fires.
Basically, the government bailed their asses out of trouble and now they are calling the government liars ( which we all know they often do about other issues). It's understandable that Chrysler does not want to deal with the situation since it will be very costly to add more structure to the rear end of almost 3 million vehicles.
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