Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is recalling 811,586 vehicles after it has been found that drivers have exited their vehicles without first selecting “Park” on their shifter.
According to FCA, the vehicles affected by the recall are equipped with electronic shift levers that return to the same position after each change. As a result, gear selection is conveyed to the driver by multiple sets of indicator lights, not gear-selector position, causing some drivers to draw erroneous conclusions about the status of their vehicles. Although FCA is aware of 41 injuries potentially related to the issue, it stressed that the vehicles involved were inspected and no evidence of equipment failure has been found.
Currently the vehicles also deliver warning chimes and alert messages if their driver-side doors are opened while their engines are still running and “Park” is engaged. The automaker and its investigation with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have found that these measures may not be sufficient to deter some drivers from exiting their vehicles without selecting “Park.”
To address the issue, FCA will enhance the warnings and transmission-shift strategy on the affected vehicles to automatically prevent them from moving under certain circumstances, even if the driver fails to select “Park.”
Vehicles affected under the recall include the 2012-2014 Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300 sedans, as well as 2014-2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs. Also subject to the recall are an estimated 52,144 vehicles in Canada, 16,805 in Mexico and 248,667 outside the North American region.
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