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Jeep Grand Cherokee recalled over power loss

Key issue: A fault in Jeep Grand Cherokees built between 2005 and 2007 has been found where the key may rotate in the ignition, effectively turning the car off.

Australia caught up in a million-car global recall affecting Jeep Grand Cherokee key

Jeep logo8 Oct 2014

FIAT Chrysler Australia has issued a recall for the Jeep Grand Cherokee due to an ignition switch fault which could result in a total loss of power to the vehicle.

The recall affects 4705 SUVs built between 2005-2007, which the company is calling model year 2008, and is part of Chrysler’s worldwide recall of 1,141,742 vehicles for the same fault.

A statement on the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission recalls website said an unintended change in the position of the ignition switch could result in “loss of engine power, power steering, and braking assist increasing the risk of crash and disabling one or more of the vehicle's safety featuring including the frontal airbags.”

Explaining the issue further, Fiat Chrysler Australia said in a statement the issue relates to keys that may become stuck or inadvertently move position in the ignition.

“Chrysler Group investigated and found the ignition keys on certain 2008 vehicles produced before May 12, 2008, may not fully return to the ‘On’ position after rotation to the ‘Start’ position during engine start-up,” the statement read.

“Instead, they may remain between the ‘Start’ and ‘On’ positions. If this occurs, windshield defroster and wiper function may be lost. Airbag function is not affected.

“Less probable is the prospect that an ignition key may not fully return to the ‘On’ position after rotation to the ‘Start’ position and may inadvertently move through the ‘On’ position to ‘Accessory’ or ‘Off’.

“If this occurs, it may result in reduced braking power and a loss of engine power, power steering, and one or more of the vehicle’s safety features including front airbags.”

The car-maker said it was unaware of any accidents or injuries related to the condition in Australia.

Affected owners will be notified by Fiat Chrysler to schedule a service at no cost. In the interim, drivers of the vehicles have been advised to ensure their ignition keys are set to the ‘On’ position (one o’clock) after starting their vehicles.

This latest recall is the fifth for the Grand Cherokee this year, following the discover of a series of faults relating to current and previous generation models.

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