UPDATE 1-Fiat Chrysler recalls 1.1 million cars, SUVs for rollaway issue
(Adds NHTSA reaction, more details)
By David Shepardson
WASHINGTON, April 22 (Reuters) - Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV said on Friday it is recalling more than 1.1 million cars and SUVs worldwide because the vehicles may roll away after drivers exit.
The automaker said the recall is linked to as many as 41 injuries because drivers mistakenly believed they had placed the vehicles in park before exiting.
The recall covers the 2012-2014 Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300 sedans and 2014-2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee sport utility vehicles. About 811,000 vehicles in the United States are affected, along with about 52,000 vehicles in Canada; nearly 17,000 in Mexico and almost 250,000 vehicles outside North America.
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which upgraded its probe into the issue in February, said on Friday that its "investigation of the shifter in these vehicles showed it is clearly a safety issue that has led to hundreds of crashes and dozens of injuries.
Fiat Chrysler said it will update the vehicles to automatically prevent them from moving, under certain circumstances, even if the driver fails to put the vehicle in park. Fiat Chrysler did not say when the recall remedy will be available.
NHTSA spokesman Bryan Thomas said the agency "will be monitoring this recall carefully to ensure that (Fiat Chrysler) produces a safe solution and gets the vehicles remedied as quickly as possible."
NHTSA said in February it had reports of 314 complaints, including 121 crashes after vehicles rolled away, some striking buildings, drivers or other cars. Injury reports include three complaints of a fractured pelvis and four others requiring some other degree of hospitalization. Continued...