Chrysler late last week issued a recall for nearly 200,000 examples of the 2017-2019 Chrysler Pacifica minivan. The affected vehicles carry build dates between Oct. 11, 2016 and Nov. 20, 2018. Vehicles built after that date feature an updated component that does not present an issue.
The problem stems from the wiring harness. A specific sealer used during the manufacturing process might cause a loose battery ground joint. In the event the connection to ground is only intermittent, the car might occasionally lose power steering or motive force. Obviously, losing systems you're not expecting to lose can increase the risk of a crash.
Chrysler discovered the issue in January after receiving field-study information from 14 vehicles reporting intermittent power steering loss. During the subsequent investigation, FCA's engineering team found that sealer might be causing the problem, and the automaker decided in early May to initiate a voluntary recall.
Thankfully, owners won't need to wait while their entire wiring harness is replaced. Instead, technicians will inspect the surfaces in question and, if necessary, clean and reassemble the battery ground joint so that it won't intermittently lose its connection. Anyone who had this fix performed and paid out of pocket will be reimbursed. Dealers and owners should expect to receive recall notifications in late June.