Update – Preliminary Determination – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Power Steering Hose

NOTICE

The Minister of Transport provides this update on the preliminary determination made April 20, 2016.

On May 5, 2016, FCA Canada Inc. (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) submitted a Notice of Defect (commonly called a safety recall) to Transport Canada for 2009-2016 Dodge Journey models. Information on the recall can be found in Transport Canada’s Motor Vehicle Safety Recalls Database.

The Minister thanks all those who provided input on the preliminary determination. Transport Canada is currently reviewing the information regarding power steering hose failures on passenger car models listed in the preliminary determination.

This notice explains events leading to today’s update and Transport Canada’s planned actions.

BACKGROUND

  • On April 20, 2016, the Minister of Transport issued a preliminary determination indicating  that it was in the interest of safety to order FCA Canada to issue a notice of safety defect to the Minister of Transport and to notify owners that certain 2009-2016 Dodge Journey multi-purpose passenger vehicles and certain 2007-2013 Chrysler 200, Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger passenger cars contain a defect in power steering return hoses which may result in a loss of power steering.
  • Transport Canada received comments from over 100 people regarding the preliminary determination including personal experiences with hose failures.
  • On May 5, 2016, FCA Canada issued a Notice of Defect, advising the Minister of Transport that a safety defect exists in the power steering system of 2009-2016 Dodge Journey models. The recall affects approximately 187,436 vehicles in Canada. FCA Canada advised that dealers will be instructed to replace the power steering return-side hoses with improved parts that are designed for extreme cold weather performance.
  • Although most of the consumer complaints involved the Dodge Journey, because the Chrysler 200, Chrysler Sebring, and Dodge Avenger demonstrated the same issues related to their power steering systems, in the interest of safety, Transport Canada included these vehicles in the preliminary determination.
  • Transport Canada remains unaware of any serious injuries or fatalities related to a failure of the described components.
  • Transport Canada is currently reviewing the public feedback as well as technical information provided by FCA Canada in response to the preliminary determination regarding failures on these passenger car models.
  • This review affects approximately 108,226 - 2011-2013 Chrysler 200, 2007-2010 Chrysler Sebring and 2007-2013 Dodge Avenger passenger cars.
  • After this review is completed, the department will provide the Minister with findings and recommendations to make a final determination related to the passenger car models listed above.
  • Subsection 10(1) of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act requires that a company shall, as provided for in the regulations, give notice of any defect in the design, manufacture or functioning of the vehicle or equipment that affects or is likely to affect the safety of any person.
  • The authority to order a company to issue a notice of safety defect, where the Minister considers it to be in the interest of safety, is provided in subsection 10(4) of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act. Pursuant to this order power, the Minister may, in the interest of safety, order FCA Canada to issue a notice of safety defect, and may specify the manner in which the notice is to be given.

Why this is important

Transport Canada has determined that a sudden loss of power steering assist while driving may result in a hazardous situation, with the potential for a loss of vehicle control.

Transport Canada and manufacturers across the automotive industry have regularly arrived at the determination that a loss of power steering assist while driving constitutes a safety defect. An analysis of complaint data received by the department has confirmed that this failure may occur while a vehicle is in motion. As a secondary risk, and in addition to the loss of power steering assist, Transport Canada believes that a high pressure hydraulic oil leak in the engine compartment may also present a risk of vehicle fire.

NEXT STEPS

If you own a 2009-2016 Dodge Journey:

  • FCA Canada will send you a safety recall notification letter by mail to advise you how to fix this problem.
  • Consult Transport Canada’s publication “The Importance of Having Recalled Vehicles Repaired” for general information about recalls.
  • If you have a problem with your vehicle, you are advised to contact a local dealership or contact FCA Canada customer care at 1-800-465-2001.

If you own a 2007-2013 Chrysler 200, Chrysler Sebring or Dodge Avenger:

  • Transport Canada is currently reviewing new complaint data and technical information provided by FCA Canada in response to the preliminary determination. The department will provide the Minister with the result of this review so he may make a final determination.
  • If you have a problem with your vehicle, you are advised to contact a local dealership or contact FCA Canada customer care at 1-800-465-2001.

Based on all of the information the Minister receives, including public comments, the Minister will decide if it is in the interest of safety to issue an order under subsection 10(4) of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act.

The Minister will provide a final determination on this matter once the review is completed.

You are welcome to submit comments at any time throughout this process by email at: mvs-sa@tc.gc.ca.

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