FCA US has issued a global recall of 66,819 MY2006-2007 pickups fitted with manual transmissions due to suspected clutch problems. The recall covers certain Dodge Dakota, Dodge Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500, and Mitsubishi Raider pickups. Geographically, the recall covers 54,558 in the United States, 4,356 in Canada, 7,648 in Mexico and 257 outside of North America.
According to FCA, its engineers discovered clutch interlock switches may be fitted with spring wire different from wire used in previous switches. The carmaker said the alternate wire may break and may cause the vehicle not to start or, in rare cases, result in unintended movement when the ignition key is turned.
The carmaker said it knows of one death linked to the issue. According to documents files with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a child entered an MY2006 Ram 3500 truck and started the ignition without the clutch depressed.
The vehicle then moved forward and struck and killed another child. NHTSA in May launched a probe into the problem after learning of the fatality. FCA said it will commence notifying owners of the recall on Feb. 13, 2015.
For the meantime, customers are advised to follow recommended procedures for starting their vehicles.