Occasionally, an automaker initiates a recall because it discovered a problem during routine inspections. Other times, a recall can come about because of reports from vehicles already in the field. Chrysler's latest recall stems from the latter.
Chrysler has issued a recall for approximately 48,000 examples of the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica minivan. The vehicles in question were all built at the Windsor Assembly Plant in Canada between Nov. 1, 2017 and Feb. 28, 2018, and that build range coincides with an increase in warranty claims for "buzz, squeak and rattle" related to the defect that spurred the recall.
The problem stems from the suspension system. According to Chrysler's recall documents, "a combination of loss of clamp load and inadequate joint engagement" might cause the right front lower control arm to come loose from the steering knuckle. If this happens, the driver might lose directional control of the vehicle, which can increase the risk of a crash.
Chrysler discovered the problem after receiving a field report of this part separation, after which point it launched an investigation to determine what was happening. As of Feb. 18, the automaker says it is not aware of any accidents or injuries related to the issue.
The automaker already has a remedy in place. After returning the recalled vehicles to dealerships, Chrysler technicians will inspect the right front steering knuckle and lower control arm, and the parts will be replaced as needed. Technicians will also install a larger pinch bolt. As with every recall fix, it will be performed free of charge, and the automaker will reimburse owners who paid for a repair prior to the recall announcement.