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Airbag kaboom triggers Jeep recall

In the bag: Jeep’s 2003 Cherokee is included in a safety recall over airbag detonations.

Up to 7000 Jeep Cherokees and Grand Cherokees recalled over exploding airbags

Jeep logo11 Jan 2013

UP TO 7000 decade-old Jeep Cherokees and Grand Cherokees have been recalled in Australia after airbags and seatbelt pre-tensioners were found to detonate inadvertently.

Although only one case of exploding airbags has surfaced in this country, Fiat Chrysler Group Australia has decided to recall 2002-4 Jeep Grand Cherokees and 2002-3 Cherokees to address the problem.

However, due to a shortage of parts in the world-wide recall, repairs have been delayed until March for Jeep Cherokee and August for Grand Cherokee.

The company says the potential problem stems from a component in the airbag control model that might fail, setting off all the airbags – front and side curtain – and seatbelt pre-tensioners.

The fix is a supplemental jumper harness that needs to be added to the module by Jeep service technicians.

Worldwide, more than 900,000 Jeeps are being recalled over the problem. The United States National Highway Traffic Administration announced the recall last November, saying it had 215 reported cases of airbag deployment in that country, resulting in 81 cases of minor injuries.

Fiat Chrysler Group director corporate affairs Lenore Fletcher said the exact number of vehicles to be recalled in Australia was unknown at this stage, due to their age.

She said about 7000 Cherokees (known as Liberty in North America) and Grand Cherokees were sold with the affected module.

Owners will be advised by letter and asked to book their vehicle into a Jeep dealership for repair.

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