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Surprise Airbag Deployments, Fire Risks Lead to Fiat Chrysler Recall

By: Ryan Gallagher July 20, 2017
Fiat Chrysler is recalling 1.3 million vehicles for potential safety issues.

Earlier this month, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) officials more than 1.3 million vehicles worldwide. The automobile manufacturer found two separate problems—faulty wiring and an alternator issue.

Drivers can check whether or not their car is affected by these recall campaigns on the FCA Recall Information website.

The first recall affects 770,000 SUVs due to a wiring issue that could cause driver-side front airbag deployment. The defective wiring can chafe against parts of the steering wheel trim, potentially triggering a short circuit.

Dodge Journey and Fiat Freemont models from 2011-2015 have been identified as defective. Drivers whose cars exhibit illuminated airbag warning lights, involuntary wiper action, or any combination of these defects should contact their dealer immediately.

The wiring issue is known to have caused five minor injuries thus far; however, no accidents have occurred as a result of the wiring problem.

The second recall affects 565,000 vehicles after FCA officials found an alternator issue could result in a car stalling, loss of the anti-lock braking system (ABS), or even fire risks. This issue comes after Fiat Chrysler recalled a number of vehicles for the same alternator issue in October 2016.

Some alternators supplied to Fiat Chrysler do not perform well after continual use in high temperatures. The faulty products cause alternator diode wear, resulting in the instrument-cluster warning light turning on or even a burning odor or smoke.

Affected vehicles are certain 2011-2014 Chrysler 300s, Dodge Chargers, Dodge Challengers, and Dodge Durangos. In addition, 2012-2014 Jeep Grand Cherokees may also be impacted.

Only cars with electro-hydraulic power steering are part of this second recall campaign. This alternator problem is known to have caused two minor injuries and no crashes so far.

For both recall issues, affected customers will be notified by mail of when they can schedule a free vehicle service, and are advised to have their car inspected as soon as possible.

Mail notices should be sent later this month. For more information, call the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles customer recall information center at (800) 853-1403.

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