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When Will It End? Takata Recalls Another 3.3 Million Airbags In The USA 8
Posted by Cristian Gnaticov in Accidents, audi, BMW, Daimler, FCA, Ford, GM, honda, Jaguar Land Rover, Mazda, mercedes, Mitsubishi, NHTSA, Recalls, Reports, Subaru, Tesla on 01 8th, 2018

Takata added another 3.3 million airbag inflators to the continuously expanding recall, making it the largest of its kind in the United States of America.

According to a report published by DetroitFreePress, the latest action revolves around the faulty frontal airbags in certain 2009, 2010, and 2013 vehicles made by a variety of car brands.

The list of automakers includes Audi, BMW, Daimler Vans, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Jaguar Land Rover, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi, Subaru, and Tesla. The exact models will be announced later this month, in the paperwork submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Takata’s faulty airbag inflators include ammonium nitrate, a chemical used to create a small explosion that fills the airbags quickly in the event of a crash. However, it’s known that when exposed to high temperatures and humidity, the chemical deteriorates, causing the metal canister to blow apart and spreading shrapnel into the cabin.

So far, at least 180 people have been injured by the metal bits worldwide, and more than 20 have lost their lives.

The NHTSA continues to monitor the automakers’ repairs progress, but even though Takata recalls originally began back in 2001, many companies have been slow to replace the airbag inflators.

A report published by an independent monitor, quoted by DetroitFreePress, states that 43.1 million inflators had been recalled until September 15, 2017, out of which only 18.5 million had been replaced, which accounts for 43 percent.


FCA To Showcase 2018 Jeep Wrangler And New Tech Features At CES 5
Posted by Michael Gauthier in CES, FCA, Jeep, Jeep Wrangler, Tech on 01 5th, 2018

Chrysler introduced the Portal concept at the Consumer Electronics Show last year and the company is returning in 2018 to showcase of host of new features.

The main attraction will be the 2018 Jeep Wrangler which recently debuted at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is bringing it to CES to highlight the model’s high-tech features which include 4G LTE connectivity and an 8.4-inch Uconnect infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility.

The brand will also be showcasing their new Jeep Adventure Reality app for late model iOS devices such as the iPhone 7, 8, and X as well as the iPad Pro. The app is currently available and it’s an augmented reality configuration tool which allows users to build their own 2018 Wrangler and then see what it would look like in their driveway.

Besides the Wrangler, FCA will be touting their new Uconnect smartwatch app which is available for Apple Watch and Android Wear devices. The app allows users to remotely start their vehicle, lock / unlock doors, and honk the horn if they need to find their vehicle in a crowded parking lot.

Another new technology feature is FCA’s Family Alerts which allow owners to monitor their vehicle from the Uconnect smartphone app. Owners can set a variety of alerts including a Boundary Alert, a Curfew Alert, and a Speed Alert. There’s also a Valet Alert which will notify owners if their vehicle is driven outside a 0.25-mile radius of its drop-off location.

Another new feature is called Drive ‘n Save and it is available on 2018 models equipped with Uconnect Access or SiriusXM Guardian. The system collects data on how the vehicle is being driven and owners can then use that information to try to get a discount on insurance.

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All These FCA Vehicles Need To Have Their Fire Extinguishers Replaced 4
Posted by Carscoops Staff in Chrysler, Dodge, FCA, Jeep, RAM, Recalls on 01 4th, 2018

Of all the recalls we’ve seen from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, this one hardly seems the biggest. It “only” affects about 60,000 vehicles, after all. But it’s the enormous variety of them that’s caught our attention.

The recall’s been issued specifically for those vehicles equipped with Kidde fire extinguishers, the nozzles of which could be prone to clogging up or falling off altogether. In either case, they won’t be doing their jobs in case, heaven forbid, an actual fire should break out.

FCA apparently fitted the problematic units to certain examples of – deep breath now – the Chrysler Pacifica (2018) and Town & Country (2014-2016); Dodge Caliber (2007), Challenger (2009), Charger (2016), Dart (2015-16), Durango (2004), Grand Caravan (2014-2016), and Journey (2014); Jeep Cherokee (2014-16), Compass (2017), and Patriot (2011); and Ram 1500 (2012, 2015), 2500 (2013-18), 3500 (2012-18), 4500 (2012-18), and 5500 (2012-18), as well as the ProMaster (2014-17), and ProMaster City (2015-17) vans.

Tally up all the models by their model years and you’re looking at 55 different vehicles, accounting for 62,042 units in the United States. Rather than call them all into dealers to have those fire extinguishers replaced, though, FCA’s instructing owners on how to get in touch with Kiddle for replacement units.

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Is Fiat’s 124 Abarth Really Different Or Just A Miata In Drag? 4
Posted by Sergiu Tudose in Abarth, FCA, Fiat, Fiat 124 Spider, Fiat Videos, Film, reviews, video on 01 4th, 2018

If you’re a fan of the Mazda MX-5, aka Miata, but you’d also like something that looks more like a traditional roadster and sounds throatier when revved, the Fiat 124 Abarth Spider becomes the obvious choice.

According to DeMuro, the 124 Abarth, while extremely similar to the Miata, does a slightly better job at standing out as a roadster.

However, while he did like the overall look of the car, the panel gap between the front fascia and wing was definitely not to his liking – it’s weirdly vertical and more noticeable than on the Mazda.

Inside, it does have a few quirks, such as the annoyingly dim “Night Mode” for the infotainment system, but overall its cabin will be a familiar place for anybody who’s ever sat in or driven the new Miata.

On the go, the 124 Abarth feels quick, sounds good and handles very well, especially on back-roads. But does it justify its almost $30,000 price, and how does it compared to its Japanese sibling?


FCA’s Recalling 1.8 Million Ram Trucks For Rollaway Risk (Yes, Again) 25
Posted by Carscoops Staff in FCA, NHTSA, RAM, Recalls on 12 25th, 2017

Automakers and regulators issue recalls large and small on a regular basis. But when one campaign affects millions of vehicles, the automotive press takes notice. And that’s just what we have on our hands here.

The latest recall from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles encompasses some 1.8 million Ram trucks – most of them in the United States – due to another rollaway risk.

The problem affects certain 2009-17 models, but only those with column shifters – not console-mounted rotary dial or floor-mounted shifters. Apparently the brake transmission shift interlock mechanism may not hold up well to prolonged exposure to high temperatures, so when the vehicle is left in Park, it could still roll away.

According to information from FCA cited by Automotive News, that’s led to seven “potentially related injuries and a small number of potentially related accidents.”

The recall affects nearly 1.5 million vehicles in the United States and almost 250,000 in Canada, with the remaining 50,000 or so vehicles in other markets around the world.

Rollaways appear to be amount to something of a chronic problem for FCA, which announced in April 2016 the recall of over a million of its vehicles for a similar problem after actor Anton Yelchin (of Star Trek fame) was killed when his own Jeep Grand Cherokee ran him over. The NHTSA launched an investigation into another million-plus FCA vehicles for a rollaway risk a year ago. And this past July, the automaker initiated the recall of still more vehicles over a related issue.

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FCA Discussing Settlement Over Diesel Emissions Cheating 21
Posted by Brad Anderson in Chrysler, diesel, FCA, Fiat, Jeep, RAM, Reports on 12 21st, 2017

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is engaging in settlement talks with owners of certain diesel-powered vehicles from the brand.

On Tuesday, a court-appointed advisor revealed that Fiat Chrysler and lawyers of diesel owners have exchanged settlement documents and briefly discussed proposed terms earlier this week alongside the Justice Department, California Air Resources Board and Robert Bosch.

In May, the U.S. Justice Department sued the car manufacturer, claiming that it had used illegal diesel software on roughly 104,000 vehicles sold in the United States since 2014. These diesel controls allowed the vehicles to emit excess pollution during normal driving conditions.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
has denied any wrongdoing and claims to have never attempted to create software aimed at cheating emissions rules.

Court settlement master Ken Feinberg revealed to Reuters that all the parties involved are acting in good faith to find a solution.

“We’re looking for different substantive ways to secure an early comprehensive settlement. Everybody in good faith is certainly trying to figure out how we might achieve a comprehensive settlement,” he said.


Maserati Could Be The Next Automaker To Enter Formula E 10
Posted by Carscoops Staff in FCA, Formula E, Maserati, Motorsport, racing, Reports on 12 10th, 2017

Automakers left and right have been flocking to Formula E, and the next one to join in on the action could be Maserati.

According to Autosport, Maserati is the most likely candidate among the numerous brands under the FCA umbrella, ahead of Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, or Dodge. But first the group’s chief executive Sergio Marchionne needs to determine whether the electric racing series represents a worthwhile investment.

The FCA chief has expressed interest in the series, most recently stating that, excluding Ferrari, it would be one of the other automakers over which he presides that would be represented should such a program be give it the green light.

“I haven’t spoken to Mr Marchionne,” series chief Alejandro Agag told Autosport, “but would naturally welcome his group into Formula E whenever the time becomes right for them.”

The Modena-based brand was just recently linked to a potential Formula One entry with the Haas team in the same way Alfa Romeo has with Sauber. But the leading motorsport publication believes a Formula E effort is far more likely to happen.

Maserati would be in good company on the electric grid, as rivals like Porsche, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, and Jaguar have all gotten involved. Aston Martin has been tied to a potential entry as well, but with the size of the field already limited, any manufacturer interested in joining would have to partner with one of the existing teams. While most of the current teams have partnered with one automaker or another, neither Techeetah nor Dragon Racing have any such partnership in place at present.

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2018 Jeep Wrangler Interior Revealed Ahead Of LA Debut [w/Video] 8
Posted by Sergiu Tudose in FCA, featured, Jeep, Jeep Videos, Jeep Wrangler, LA Auto Show, new cars, video on 11 8th, 2017

Jeep’s all-new 2018 Wrangler is one of the most eagerly anticipated cars of the year, and with the LA Auto Show just weeks away, we’re inching closer to learning everything we need to know about it.

These images show an interior design that combines traditional styling with new technologies, as the 2018 Wrangler will surely pack more safety features and connectivity options than ever before.

FCA tells us to also expect improved versatility, more high-quality materials and better overall comfort for drivers and passengers. For example, leather with contrast stitching on top of the dashboard wasn’t something Wrangler owners previously expected from their cars.

The overall design of the cabin has also been changed, even though it remains instantly recognizable as Wrangler-ish. The steering wheel is an evolution of the one found on the previous model, whereas the center console now features a larger screen flanked by two air vents. On the old car, the vents were positioned below the sat-nav display and the climate control switches looked like they belonged on something from the early 2000s. Now, everything looks more modern.

There’s also a display between the two main gauges, plus a lot more buttons and switches for taking your Wrangler off-road – something purists will certainly appreciate.

The rest of the car, we’ve already seen. It still features the keystone-shaped grille, round headlights, square taillights, better aerodynamics, a fold-down windshield and lots of customization options.

Jeep will release more images as well as complete vehicle info on November 29th, at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show.



Why U.S. Car Makers Can’t Get A Break In Japan 7
Posted by Michael Karkafiris in Donald Trump, FCA, Ford, GM, japan, Reports on 11 7th, 2017

The Japanese car market has proven to be a really tough place for U.S. manufacturers, who have claimed that protectionist policies keep them out of the third largest car market in the world but the reality is more complicated than that.

Japanese brands account for 90 percent of the domestic car market in Japan and a big role in this is due to the special relationship between the customer and the dealer. Japanese buyers are used to having a much closer relationship with the dealer compared to the Western standards.

According to a report from the Atlantic, a dealer from a Japanese brand will build a relationship with their customers by bringing demo cars to the customer’s house, offer free car washes for life, handle their insurance policies and remain generally in contact with them, offering a service that’s considered kind of a custom in the country.

This hospitality is what helps the Japanese automakers remain dominant in their home market and is also what baffles American dealers that aren’t used to provide this kind of service.

In the U.S. market the domestic brands remain dominant but with a much smaller share of the pie, with the Big Three -GM, Ford, FCA- making up 45 percent of the market and the Japanese brands accounting for 39 percent. This dynamic contributes in part to the trade imbalance between the U.S. and Japan: last year it was $68.9 billion and a large share of it came from vehicles and from automotive parts ($52.6 billion).

This has long been an issue for politicians, including Trump who said earlier this year that the Japanese “make it impossible to sell cars in Japan”. American carmakers also use the same line of argument, accusing Japan of protectionist policies saying that practices like requiring lengthy car inspections of foreign-made vehicles and prohibiting existing dealers from selling foreign cars have prevented non-domestic car companies from gaining a larger share of the market.

However, protectionism is not the full explanation of why Japanese customers don’t buy foreign cars. For example, there are no import tariffs on cars, whereas the U.S. and EU impose 2.5 percent and 10 percent tariffs.

Instead, the problem lies in large part in the hesitance of American car dealers to invest in the kind of network that Japanese consumers have come to expect. “The way Japanese consumers buy cars is very different,” Deborah Elms, the executive director of the Asian Trade Center said. “Yet the Americans have not invested in a dealer network to break into the market.” Indeed, Ford has pulled out of Japan, where it had sold just 5,000 units annually while GM has only 28 dealerships in the country, managing to sell just 1,000 cars in 2016.

Japanese customers expect to receive services like free maintenance from their dealers and picking up their car for a check-up, performing it and then return it. This sort of dealer network is expensive to develop but also to maintain.

Not all foreign companies though struggle with Japan; imports from EU grew five percent between 2013 and 2016, with 251,115 cars while imports from the U.S. shrank by 15 percent for the same period, to 19,933 cars. Brands like Mercedes and BMW saw their sales growing by 60 percent and 23 percent respectively between 2012 and 2016.

BMW for example decided three years ago to redouble its efforts in the Japanese market, spending $675 million to refurbish its dealer network. “In Japan, everything is about hospitality,” Peter Kronschnabl, the CEO of BMW Group Japan and the chairperson of the European Business Council’s Automotive Committee and the Japan Automobile Importers Association, said. “If you are not into this, it will be very difficult to succeed in the Japanese market.”


Maserati Wants To Launch A Second SUV By 2020 26
Posted by Brad Anderson in FCA, Maserati, Reports, SUV on 10 26th, 2017

FCA chief executive Sergio Marchionne has announced Maserati’s intention to launch a second SUV by 2020.
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Maserati Wants To Launch A Second SUV By 2020 26
Posted by Brad Anderson in FCA, Maserati, Reports, SUV on 10 26th, 2017

FCA chief executive Sergio Marchionne has announced Maserati’s intention to launch a second SUV by 2020.
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2018 Jeep Wrangler Goes Into Production Later This Year, Facelifted Cherokee Coming In Early 2018 24
Posted by Michael Gauthier in FCA, Jeep, Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Wrangler, RAM on 10 24th, 2017

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has released its third quarter results presentation and it includes some interesting new details about the Jeep Cherokee and Wrangler.
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Yes, The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk Is Faster Than The Demon 23
Posted by Brad Anderson in FCA, Hellcat, Jeep, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Videos, Trackhawk, video on 10 23rd, 2017

The Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is one remarkable performance car but if you’re looking for comparable straight-line performance and much more practicality, the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is the way to go.
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FCA Ends Production Of RHD Chrysler And Dodge Models 20
Posted by Brad Anderson in Australia, Chrysler, Dodge, FCA, Reports, south-africa on 10 20th, 2017

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has stopped production of all its right-hand drive Chrysler and Dodge models.
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Jeep Compass Spawns Next-Generation Fiat Freemont 17
Posted by Brad Anderson in FCA, Fiat, Fiat Freemont, Jeep, Jeep Compass, Renderings, SUV on 10 17th, 2017

If you were to interview 100 people and ask if they think the Fiat Freemont looks good, chances are 99 would say it is as ugly as sin.
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