The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is sending a loud message to the automobile industry that it will not tolerate a lack of following through on recalls in its recent consent order with Fiat Chrysler. Recalls are important to fix safety problems in vehicles that cause consumers to suffer serious injuries and deaths. Now when automakers such as Fiat Chrysler do not work to repair the vehicles they recall, they could face huge fines and more.
Which Vehicles Chrysler Is Ordered to Buy Back
In its consent order with NHTSA, Fiat Chrysler agreed to pay civil penalties totaling $105 million because of its poor track record in repairing more than 11 million recalled vehicles over the last few years. The automaker must also buy back or offer cash incentives to consumers. Affected vehicles include:
- Ram trucks and Dodge SUVs. The recall applies to almost 200,000 vehicles built between 2008 and 2012 that were the subject of three recalls in 2013. They can lose power steering while being driven or have axle problems. The automaker is required to offer buybacks of these vehicles because it failed to come up with an adequate remedy to fix the problems.
- Jeep Grand Cherokees. Fiat Chrysler must offer cash incentives to one million Jeep owners whose vehicles have been recalled to get them to bring their vehicles in for repair. These vehicles were recalled because the rear-mounted fuel tanks can explode in rear-end collisions.
Details of the buyback and cash incentive programs are still being worked out. Consumers can contact their dealership or check Fiat Chrysler’s website for more information regarding when they can take advantage of these programs.