Pull up a chair, folks, because it’s about to get good. After receiving a letter from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommending that Chrysler recall some 2.7 million Jeep models, the car maker has come forward to say that they do “not agree with NHTSA’s conclusions,” noting that “the subject vehicles are safe and are not defective.”
The NHTSA issued a voluntary recall to Chrysler involving 1993-2004 model year Jeep Grand Cherokees and 2002-2007 Jeep Libertys. The NHTSA believes that the fuel tanks on these vehicles is defective and could lead to a fuel leak. This could possibly result when the vehicle is involved in a rear-impact collision.
However, Chrysler thinks that the “NHTSA’s initial conclusions are based on an incomplete analysis of the underlying data,” a.k.a. the NHTSA is wrong. The company says that “these vehicles met and exceeded all applicable requirements of the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards…pertaining to fuel-system integrity.”
Chrysler also says that accidents that were said to have been caused by the supposed defect weren’t caused by anything other than normal operation of the vehicles. The company’s analysis showed that reports of accidents occurred “less than once for every million years of vehicle operation. This rate is similar to comparable vehicles produced and sold during the time in question.”
In this case, Chrysler says that changing the design of the fuel tank wouldn’t matter, as many of the accidents reported were due to high-speed, high collision incidents, including a semi truck traveling 65 mph and hitting a stationary Grand Cherokee, which eventually caught on fire. Chrysler says that they’re more than willing to keep working with the NHTSA to come to an agreement, but if nothing is agreed upon, the NHTSA could take legal action to force a recall.