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2014-01-21 09:52

BATTLE OVER This 1999 Jeep Cherokee was apparently rear-ended by a truck and burned out. One of many incidents which contributed to the 2013 Chrysler/ Jeep recall. Image: NHTSA

DETROIT, Michigan - Chrysler faced a rocky 2013 when 2.7-million Jeeps were recalled due to safety issues. Now the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has finally closed its long-running investigation and dropped the recall request made in June 2013.

In 2013 2.7-million Jeep were recalled due to several issues,but it seems the automaker has won the fight. Despite more than 50 people killed due to Jeep safety faults, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has closed its long-running investigation into 2.7 million older Jeep SUV model.


In June 2013, Wheels24 reported that Chrysler would recall nearly 435 000 Jeeps to fix air bag and transmission fluid leaks and South African owners were also affected.

This recall followed a separate story published on June 3 2013, in which Wheels24 reported that Chrysler had rejected a US safety agency's request to recall as many as 2.7-million Jeeps to fix an alleged fuel-tank collision fire risk.

According to the Detroit News, the NHTSA had concerns that fuel tanks mounted in the rear posed an unreasonable risk of fire in rear-end crashes.

The federal auto safety agency informed Chrysler of the decision earlier in January 2013, officials briefed on the probe said. NHTSA’s formal closing of the investigation will come in the next few weeks with the release of a closing report, the DetNews reported.


Despite rejecting the huge recall, the automaker agreed to recall more than 254 000 Patriots and Compasses built between 2010-12 in the US due to airbag issues. It also recalled more than 180 000 Jeep Wranglers (2012-13 units) to fix transmission fluid leaks. However, the DetNews said, that recall was still in progress as Chrysler said earlier in January 2014 that it was still preparing to begin fixing vehicles.

The estimated cost of that recall was estimated to as the equivalent of R1.63-billion.

Wheels24 reported that the NHTSA said in a letter to Chrysler dated June 3 2013, a year-long investigation came to a "tentative" conclusion that the fuel tank's sitting behind the rear axle was a safety risk. The agency had identified a pattern of fires erupting in the vehicles after rear-end collisions because of ruptured fuel tanks. As many as 51 deaths had been reported.

The automaker conceded that "about 21" deaths had occurred in rear-impact collisions that resulted in fires but the rest may have been "attributed to other types of accidents". The NHTSA insisted that the cars may have a defect "that presents an unreasonable risk to safety".

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