Auto recall attorneys at Pintas & Mullins report that Chrysler is recalling 469,000 of its Jeep Grand Cherokees and Commanders due to gear shifting problems. There has already been more than 25 crashes and two injuries associated with the issue.
The recall extends to 2005 through 2010 Grand Cherokees and 2006 through 2010 Commanders, worldwide. United States safety regulators found that there are cracks in some of these vehicles' circuit boards, which cause faulty signals as the SUV is started. The vehicles can then shift into neutral without warning and roll away.
Chrysler will notify customers and dealers affected by the recall and will update software to remedy the problems. Repairs will be made to the vehicles at no cost to the owner. The recall extends to 295,000 vehicles in the United States, 28,000 Canadian vehicles, 4,200 in Mexico, and an additional 141,000 overseas. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently became aware of them problem after one Jeep owner complained that their SUV rolled away after being started.
Another major issue plaguing the world's largest automakers involves defective airbags. According to a recent CBS article, six of the largest automakers, such as Honda, Nissan, and Toyota have recalled nearly three and a half million vehicles due to airbag problems. These mass recalls reflect not only the automotive industry's failure to provide the public with safe vehicles, but the decreasing confidence consumers have in product manufacturers as a whole.
The faulty airbags were manufactured by Takata Corporation, the world's second-largest manufacturer of airbags and seatbelts. Just a few days ago, the recall was extended to include about 220,000 BMWs from model years 2002 to 2003. The recall includes the automaker's popular 3-Series convertibles, coupes, sedans, and station wagons.
BMW plans to have parts to dealerships to repair the airbags by July, which leaves tens of thousands of American drivers out of luck for the ensuing months. The NHTSA reported that the BMW recall involve airbags manufactured at Takata's Washington plant, where the propellant components in the airbags may have been manufactured with insufficient compaction force.
A mere five years ago, Toyota was one of the most trusted vehicle brands, believed to provide safe, family-friendly, fairly-priced vehicles. Between 2009 and 2010, however, the company recalled millions of vehicles due to defective gas pedals, floor mats, and break devices. In fact, Toyota was subjected to a class action lawsuit over the defects in certain Lexus models that caused the vehicles to accelerate unexpectedly.
The Lexus acceleration issued killed at least 90 people and injured 60 others. The company ultimately agreed to pay more than $1 billion to its customers who claimed economic loss from the defective vehicles. This settlement, however, did not include those plaintiffs suing Toyota for the dozens of wrongful deaths.
Toyota also had to repair, inspect or fix 1.7 million vehicles in the past few years, including the popular Corolla, Sequoia, Tundra, and Matrix. This troubling increase of product defects has resulted in serious, life-changing, and fatal injuries.
Auto recall lawyers at Pintas & Mullins urge American drivers to not ignore any recalls affecting your vehicle. Finding recalls and getting vehicles repaired is easy, and will not cost owners anything. If you or a loved one was seriously injured in an accident caused by a recalled vehicle or defective auto part, you have important legal rights, and may be entitled to significant compensation through a lawsuit against the automaker.