Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is recalling approximately 4.8 million vehicles in the United States as the company has determined an “unlikely sequence of events” could prevent the cruise control system from being deactivated.
According to the automaker, someone has to be driving one of the affected models with the cruise control system activated. The system would then need to increase the speed of the vehicle at the same time there’s a short-circuit in a “specific electrical network.” If this occurs, the driver may discover they cannot cancel the cruise control system.
While this would be pretty scary, FCA says drivers can overpower cruise control acceleration by using the vehicle’s brakes. The company also notes drivers can shift the car into neutral and then brake accordingly. Regardless of which option is used, cruise control will be cancelled once the car is put in park.
In a statement, FCA’s Chief Technical Compliance Officer and Head of Vehicle Safety & Regulatory Compliance for the NAFTA region said “Notwithstanding the extraordinary circumstances that must exist before a customer would experience a problem, we are taking this action because we are fully committed to vehicle safety.” Mark Chernoby went on to say “We have a remedy and a widespread network of engaged dealers who are preparing to deliver service.”
FCA will be notifying customers next week and the company recommends that owners don’t use the cruise control system until their vehicle has been equipped with updated software to correct the problem. That being said, the company is unaware of any injuries or accidents related to recall even though affected models have clocked over 200 billion miles (321 billion km).
The recalled vehicles are equipped with gasoline engines and automatic transmissions from the following models years:
2015-17 Chrysler 200 sedan
2014-18 Chrysler 300 sedan
2017-18 Chrysler Pacifica minivan
2015-18 Dodge Challenger coupe
2014-18 Dodge Charger sedan
2014-18 Dodge Journey CUV
2014-18 Dodge Durango SUV
2014-18 Jeep Cherokee SUV
2014-18 Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV
2018 Jeep Wrangler
2014-19 Ram 1500 pickup
2014-18 Ram 2500 pickup
2014-18 Ram 3500 pickup
2014-18 Ram 3500 cab chassis
2014-18 Ram 4500/5500 cab chassis
FCA also notes additional vehicles are being recalled in Canada, Mexico and other markets. The recall also affects the Fiat Fremont which is a rebadged version of the Dodge Journey.