2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee, 2022 Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer recalled

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In September, while Fiat Chrysler engineers were working with supplier Veoneer on a manufacturing issue, they discovered a separate software issue concerning the Occupant Restraint Controller (ORC) for certain airbags. After six weeks of investigation, FCA decided on a voluntary safety recall for 87,780 units of the 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L, and 11,475 units of the 2022 Jeep Wagoneer and 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer. That makes 99,255 SUVs that will need to visit the dealer for repairs, with an estimated defect rate of 100%.

The problem is a trio of internal faults with the airbag system that don't cause diagnostic trouble codes (DTC), which the faults are supposed to do. The faults can disable proper airbag deployment for the driver and passenger, as well as disable the knee airbags. These malfunctions can increase the risk of injury in a crash. However, since they don't throw up any diagnostic trouble codes, the airbag warning light won't illuminate to warn the driver and occupants that there's an issue with the airbag system. Jeep reports that it does not know of any injuries or fatalities stemming from this defect.

FCA says it will begin sending letters to notify owners sometime around December 30. Owners can take their Jeeps to the dealer to have the OCR reprogrammed free of charge. Meanwhile, owners of affected vehicles can call FCA's hotline at 1-800-853-1403 and cite voluntary recall number Y79. They can also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236, or go to www.nhtsa.gov web site to view the recall information. The NHTSA campaign number is 21V873000.

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