Chrysler Group is recalling 840,000 vehicles in the United States and other countries, mostly due to flaws on active-restraint headrest and possibly faulty airbags. Chrysler is issuing five separate recalls that include 490,000 cars and sports utility vehicles for the active-restraint headrest problem, and 282,000 minivans for possible malfunctioning airbags.
According to Chrysler spokesman Eric Mayne, the recalls are an indication of the carmaker's "aggressive quality-control protocol." The airbag issue in the minivans resulted to three reported accidents and one "minor" injury, Chrysler said, adding that it is not aware of any injuries or accidents related to the headrest issue. The recalls include 490,000 cars and SUVs that may have possibly faulty micro computer components for headrests that are designed to move forward during rear-end collisions.
Affected models include 2011-2013 Chrysler Sebring, Chrysler 200, Dodge Avenger and Jeep Liberty vehicles, as well as 2011-2012 Dodge Nitro SUVs. Chrysler said in a statement that the "potentially faulty microcontrollers" were installed in a supplied component. The carmaker said the component entered the supply chain following the earthquake and tsunami that shook Japan in 2011, causing a global microcontroller shortage.
According to papers filed by Chrysler to the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the component was produced by TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. Chrysler plans to fix the affected models by upgrading a power module or the "occupant restraint control module," it detailed in the filing.
Although Chrysler has improved its scores on third-party quality assessments in recent years, it has issued 12 separate recalls since June 2013 covering about 4 million vehicles. The number includes 2.7 million older Jeep models that Chrysler initially refused to recall following a request from the NHTSA. [source: BBC]