Chrysler Group announced that it is issuing a recall of nearly 900,000 SUVs due to “faulty wiring in vanity mirror lights that can short circuit and set fire.” Although the recall was announced yesterday, Chrysler actually initiated an investigation into the faulty vanity mirrors back in March 2011 following customer complaints of sun visor heat damage, and discovered the problem arose when wires were taken out during the reassembly process at the plant, where one or more of the screws used to mount the visors to the roof “may have pierced or penetrated the sun visor wiring either during initial vehicle assembly or subsequent headliner area repairs,” according to a report from the National Highway Safety Administration.
The recall involves 2011-14 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Durangos manufactured Jan. 5, 2010, through Dec. 11, 2013, at the company’s Jefferson North plant in Detroit, MI. According to a statement by the company. 651,000 of the vehicles were sold in the US, 45,700 in Canada, 23,000 in Mexico and 175,000 in other countries beyond the NAFTA region. The company will begin notifying owners next month, and Chrysler dealers will repair the vehicles by installing a space containing a wire guide to keep the lines routed correctly and prevent short-circuiting during reassembly, as well as install a new sun visor at no charge.
In the meantime the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began their own probe into the problem after receiving three consumer reports of fires in 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokees last August. The NHTSA investigation was then revised this past January to include Jeep Grand Cherokees for the 2011 and 2013 model years and Dodge Durangos from 2011-2013.
Readers can either contact their local Chrysler dealership for more information, or call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888 327-4236. Recall information is also available at wwwnhtsa.gov