NHTSA Investigating 105,000 Jeep Liberty Vehicles for Possible Safety System Malfunctions
Depending on the results of the investigation, a recall could potentially be issued for the Jeep vehicles
Less than a month ago, FCA issued a massive recall for more than 1.25 million Ram truck models due to a malfunction in their safety systems. Now another recall might be right on the horizon for FCA, this time involving one of its Jeep vehicles.
The U.S. Government is currently investigating 105,000 Jeep Liberty vehicles due to possibly malfunctioning airbag control computer systems.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has received a series of 44 complaints surrounding Jeep Liberty models assembled for the 2012 model year. According to these complaints, the Occupant Restraint Controller safety computer designed to detect crashes and deploy airbags accordingly was not functioning properly.
Fortunately, no injuries related to the malfunction have been reported as of yet. Furthermore, an official statement from FCA indicates that the only safety device affected by the defects is a head rest that swivels to prevent injuries from becoming far more severe during a crash.
Most motorists noticed the defect after their airbag warning light came on. The problem is seemingly corrected when the malfunctioning computer is replaced.
However, replacing the Occupant Restraint Controller system is not cheap. One Liberty owner was told that he would have to pay for the computer’s repair process, which can cost anywhere between $375 to $500.
“This is a safety issue which should be covered by the manufacturer,” wrote the motorist.
“Around 91,100 miles the airbag light came on the dashboard upon starting the car,” another Liberty owner reported. “The light stayed illuminated constantly for approximately three days until it was put in the shop. This car has never been wrecked. This car has never been wrecked… after reading how many complaints there are I feel that this should be a safety recall.”
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According to the NHTSA, the complaints seem to be far more frequent in Jeep Liberty vehicles built for the 2012 model year, the last year of the Liberty’s production. The organization is currently investigating any potential safety concerns to determine if a mandatory recall is necessary.
FCA has stated that it is currently cooperating with the probe. However, depending on the results from the NHTSA’s findings, the automaker may soon have to cooperate in a recall instead.
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