Tomorrow morning (7/27/15) the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will announce the largest fine in U.S. Auto history against FCA/Chrysler revolving around some 23 recalls which either lacked proper notice to consumers, suffered delays in recall repairs and other related violations.
Last month FCA/Chrsyler was called before the NHTSA to answer questions centering around certain recalls and numerous consumer complaints, including often being told that the delay in recall repairs was a result of parts being on back order, whether they actually were or not.
While the timing chain recall for the Challenger was not part of this particular recall investigation, the excuses given by dealers for the delay in timing chain repairs were similar to the excuses being told to consumers for other FCA/Chrysler recalls, i.e., the parts were on back order, etc.
As a result of the NHTSA investigation, FCA/Chrysler has agreed to settle the matter and pay $105 million in fines and penalties for its lax attitude toward addressing safety issues in millions of vehicles and slow completion rates of repairs affected by its recalls. FCA/Chrysler will also have an independent monitor appointed to monitor its future recall performance and compliance. as well as having to buy back millions of vehicles from consumers, mostly Ram trucks and Jeeps. Other affected owners may have their vehicles repurchased for higher than Blue Book value or receive other incentives.
NHTSA said the action taken was due to a concerns about slow completion rates on recalls, slow or inadequate notifications to consumers, inadequate approaches to fixing safety related issues and improper actions by dealers.