Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is being fined $105 million by the NHTSA for lagging and inadequate repairs, obstructing and misleading regulators, and failing to notify car owners of recalls in a timely manner. FCA, makers of Fiat, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram vehicles, receives this fine in light of 23 recalls involving around 11 million defective vehicles. Some of the largest include:
- Estimated 2 million Ram pickup trucks with oversensitive airbag sensors
- Around 1.5 million Jeeps prone to deadly fires
- 4 million vehicles discovered to be vulnerable to hacker takeover
- More than half a million Ram trucks and Dodge SUVs built from 2008 to 2012 with defective suspension parts
Fiat Chrysler has agreed to pay the fines and meet the demands of the NHTSA “with renewed resolve to improve our handling of recalls and re-establish the trust our customers place in us.” Many recalled vehicles will be eligible for buybacks and other financial incentives. FCA is required to notify all owners of the available incentives, and FCA is also subject to three years of “unprecedented oversight” from the NHTSA. The company is required to pay:
- $70 million cash penalty
- $20 million toward meeting performance requirements
- Potential $15 million fine for any additional violations discovered
“Today’s action holds Fiat Chrysler accountable for its past failures, pushes them to get unsafe vehicles repaired or off the roads and takes concrete steps to keep Americans safer going forward,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary, Anthony Foxx. “This civil penalty puts manufacturers on notice that the Department will act when they do not take their obligations to repair safety defects seriously.”
Has your vehicle been recalled? You can search recalls using your VIN online. Carmakers are also required to notify owners of recalled vehicles via mail. Should your vehicle be recalled, always follow the instructions from the car manufacturer closely to protect yourself and your family.
Read the full press release from the NHTSA.