U.S. regulators investigating Jeep Liberty for potential in advertent airbag deployment

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 1, 2012

The U.S. safety regulators’ probe on Jeep Liberty sport utility vehicles for potential inadvertent airbag deployment is inching towards a recall after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration upgraded its investigation to an engineering analysis. A total of 386,873 Chrysler SUVs from model years 2002 and 2003 units are affected by this issue.

A recall will be announced if the agency finds that the automaker has to address a safety issue. And speaking of recalls, more than 52,000 older Tribute SUVs are being recalled by Mazda Motor Corp Motor Corp. for potential brake fluid leaks.

Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz has started to investigate consumer complaints of fuel odor that may be a leak in about 8,000 older E55 AMG sedans and wagons. With regards to the Chrysler matter, the agency has found 87 reports of unintentional driver or passenger front airbag deployment, leading to 50 alleged injuries, such as burns, cuts and bruises to the upper body, according to online documents.

The NHTSA added that of these 87 incidents, 42 involve the driver front airbag deploying without a crash, happening at vehicle startup and while driving on the road and 45 involved both the driver and passenger front airbags.

Several drivers noticed that the airbag warning light illuminated right before airbag deployment. Chrysler conducted its own inspection and found that an internal electronic chip that controls airbag deployment failed, possibly because of a voltage spike. Chrysler is working to find the root causes.

Since the launch of its introductory model in 2002, the Jeep Liberty has been a leader in the mid-size sport-utility vehicle (SUV) category, offering SUV enthusiasts a fun-filled driving adventure and personal freedom in both city driving and off-road driving conditions.

Now comes the unveiling of the all-new 2008 Jeep Liberty, available in two variants – the Jeep Liberty Sport and the Jeep Liberty Limited. With its famous and incredibly efficient 4x4 reputation further bolstered by the Jeep Trail Rated four-wheel-drive system, the all-new Jeep Liberty is designed for maximum off-road agility and maneuverability.

This four-wheel-drive system comes in two variants- the Command-Trac and the all-new Selec-Trac II. On the other hand, a smoother on-road driving experience is made possible with the infusion of a new independent front suspension, a new five-link rear suspension and a rack-and-pinion steering system.

The all-new 2008 Jeep Liberty has been given an exterior design enhancement to give it a more handsomely-rugged, classic Jeep look that will most certainly attract a wider following for the iconic vehicle. As for the Jeep Liberty’s interior, design engineers have increased the cargo and storage space. The Liberty’s seats have also undergone substantial improvements for added passenger comfort. Another main feature of the new Jeep Liberty is its new, industry-exclusive Sky Slider full-open canvas roof which gives the Jeep Liberty another definite exclusive advantage with its open-air driving experience.

Other notably interesting and impressive features of the Jeep Liberty are its remote start system, memory seats and mirrors, rain-sensing wipers which automatically switch on and off, daytime running lights, express up/down windows and the list goes on.

In a nutshell, George Murphy, Senior Vice President for Global Marketing, Chrysler Group, proudly stated that the all-new 2008 Jeep Liberty is the league leader in the mid-size SUV category because of its notable advantages such as its iconic, classic Jeep design, two excellent four-wheel-drive system options, a substantial improvement in on-road driving and handling experience, an improved and expanded cargo and utility section and other unique and superb features found only in the Jeep Liberty.

Topics: jeep, jeep liberty

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