Because of the risk of fiery rear-end crashes, consumer activist Ralph Nader is asking Fiat to issue a recall of 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokees produced by Chrysler. An investigation has already been opened by U.S. safety regulators who are considering a recall of 3 million Grand Cherokees.
Nader said that the Grand Cherokee in the recent years “is a modern-day Pinto for soccer moms” since the fuel tank is located behind the rear axle below the rear bumper.
Nader recently received an award from Quattroruote auto magazine and in his speech, he said that as Fiat has bought Chrysler, it is morally obligated to repair the deadly fuel tank design in the Jeep Grand Cherokee before it claims more victims in the U.S. and in Europe.
He also asserted that the 1993-98 Grand Cherokees have a flaw as the filler hose goes through the frame rail and is pulled out of the fuel tank. In response, Chrysler denies that its fuel tanks on the Grand Cherokees are defective and it claims that there is no risk present.
Chrysler spokesman Michael Palese said that in a study that the automaker conducted, 21,000 rear impacts in the 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokees were compared with similar models from other companies.
Chrysler determined from this study that fires are no more common in Grand Cherokees than in other vehicles. [via autonews - sub. required]