Over the past few days it has been nearly impossible to turn on the TV or radio without hearing about the Fiat-Chrysler recall. With approximately 1.1 million sedans and SUVs involved, 52,000 in Canada alone, you may be wondering whether your car is affected. And for good reason! There have been more than 300 reported complaints of rollaways with 120 resulting crashes and 30 injuries being attributed to the misbehaving shifter.
Table of contents
Here are some details to help you determine whether your vehicle is one of those affected and what you’ll need to do to fix it.
More about the recall
The shifter, originally manufactured by German transmission supplier ZF, has been deemed too confusing to drivers. Since it’s mounted onto the console the shifter becomes a rocking switch that, more often then not, returns to the middle position without the driver being aware. Additionally, small gear indentations made it difficult to differentiate between which gear was selected. Combined these issues resulted in the aforementioned rollaways, accidents and injuries.
Vehicles affected by the recall
- 2012-2014 Dodge Chargers
- 2012-2014 Chrysler 300 sedans
- 2014-2015 Jeep Grand Cherokees
Since the flaw is design-related Fiat-Chrysler will not replace the shifter element. Their fix will combine improved warning alerts and sounds with a new shift strategy. To the driver, this will appear as a display warning and chime sounds when the driver’s door is opened while the engine is running. Additionally, the transmission will prevent the vehicle from rolling even if the driver does not shift into “PARK”.
What to do if your car is affected
If your vehicle is one of those affected then you will be notified when service is available. In the meantime Fiat-Chrysler strongly suggests that customers follow the owner’s manual instructions.
Lastly, your dealership or vehicle manufacturer should be in touch with you to offer you the earliest available date for servicing. It doesn’t hurt to get in touch with them sooner, if you’re concerned that your vehicle is among those recalled.
As with all recalls, this is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly. The sooner you find out whether your vehicle is affected, and get it fixed, the better!