Almost A Million Fiat Chrysler Vehicles Recalled From US And Canada For Failing Emissions

Fiat Chrysler Recall
2019 Jeep Wranglers move to the Final 1 assembly line at the Chrysler Jeep Assembly plant in Toledo, Ohio (Photo: Reuters)

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV has formally issued a recall of more than 965,000 of its gasoline vehicles in the United States and Canada. The vehicles have reportedly failed to meet both countries' emission standards due to problems with the vehicles' catalytic converters. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had initially conducted in-use emission testing for several of the company's vehicles. Fiat Chrysler had reportedly also conducted the same tests and found out that their products had not passed regulations.

Shortly after the tests were conducted, Fiat immediately issued a voluntary recall. The EPA had also announced that they will be conducting further tests on other Chrysler models to make sure that they pass regulations. Any vehicle model that is found to be noncompliant could also be recalled in the future. So far, more than 863,000 vehicles have been recalled from the United States, while 103,000 vehicles were recalled from Canada.

The recalled vehicles included Dodge Journeys released from 2011 to 2016, Jeep Compass and Patriots released from 2011 to 2016, Dodge Calibers released from 2011 to 2012, and finally Dodge Avengers and Chrysler 200s released from 2011 to 2014.

Despite failing to meet emission regulations, the EPA has apparently chosen not to impose any fines to the automotive manufacturer given its voluntary recall. Chrysler also mentioned in the statement that the defect was in no way endangering any of its customers as there were no safety implications. The company declined to comment on the total cost of the recall but stated that it had already accounted for the loss in its 2018 fourth-quarter report.

The company stated that they have already begun to contact all the affected customers so that they can bring in their vehicles for repair at no extra charge. Chrysler explained that the installed catalytic converters on the affected vehicles are apparently prone to early deterioration, which greatly reduces their effectiveness in cleaning toxic gases from exhaust emissions. Following the recall, the California Air Resources (CARB) announced that they will not be reregistering Chrysler vehicles that have not been repaired.

Prior to the recall, Fiat Chrysler had reached a settlement agreement with the United States Justice Department and the State of California pertaining to allegations involving its use of software to cheat in diesel-emissions tests. The company agreed to pay a hefty fine of US$800 million. The case against Fiat Chrysler is the latest in the government's renewed efforts to enforce strict emission regulations. The move was mainly prompted by the highly publicized Volkswagen scandal, where the company had intentionally evaded emission regulations to sell their diesel vehicles in the country. 

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