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Jeep KJ Liberty Recall N46—a Trailer Hitch is the Fix!

Jeep KJ Liberty Jeep Liberty Jeep discussion Jeep forum

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13 replies to this topic

#1 belvedere

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 06:41 AM

We recently received a recall notice for my wife's '06 Libby.  The problem is that the fuel tank could leak during a rear-end collision (ya think?!), and the fix is to install a trailer hitch.  I thought that was an interesting fix, but I sure won't complain about a free OEM hitch!  It also noted that parts are not currently available, but that we'll receive another notice when they are.  Can you imagine how many hitches Chrysler will need for all the '02-'07 KJs on the road??



#2 Moses Ludel

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:33 AM

Well, Belvedere, you are among the 1,560,000 owners who could be eligible for a free hitch! Here's the NHTSA statement about the issue and repair: http://www-odi.nhtsa...a_ids=13V252000.

You'll like the Mopar hitch, these parts fit well and enhance the appearance and function of your vehicle. They add value, too!

Moses

#3 biggman100

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 10:18 AM

This recall also covers the 1993 to 2004 Grand Cherokee as well as the Liberty. My mother in law just got the letter on her 02 grand Cherokee.



#4 JanetBrown

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Posted 18 October 2014 - 02:48 PM

Hi, I have just received a recall notice fN46 for my Jeep KJ (Cherokee in the UK) - whilst your headline is that a Trailer Hitch is the fix, I have been advised by the stealership that if it is necessary to remove my trailer hitch to install a cross beam to repair the problem then they will NOT replace my trailer hitch afterwards and that I will have to pay to have it replaced. Yet in the USA a trailer hitch will be supplied and fitted for free.
 
How is this right?????

#5 Moses Ludel

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Posted 18 October 2014 - 04:03 PM

Hello, Janet...Welcome to the forums! Have you shared the U.S. recall information with the dealership? (See the link in the earlier discussion.)

 

In the U.S., the dealer network has a Chrysler/Mopar representative (zone manager) who visits the dealerships on a regular basis. You can ask your dealer to set up a meeting with the Chrysler representative for his/her next visit to the dealership.  Or you may be able to contact the zone rep directly.

If your vehicle already has the appropriate Mopar hitch in place and installed properly, the U.S. safety recall suggests that this reinforcement is sufficient to remedy the problem and risks. If you have a hitch in place that is not the equivalent of the Mopar replacement hitch, in the U.S., the dealer would likely just replace your existing hitch with the Mopar replacement parts—free of charge.

There is no mention of a U.S. cross beam repair. By U.S. standards and the Chrysler agreement with NHTSA, the hitch described will serve the same purpose as the cross beam your dealer describes.

Unless your UK automotive safety bureau has altered the requirement for fixing this problem, the Chrysler/Jeep zone or regional service/parts manager should be able to discuss this issue and offer a reasonable solution at no charge.  The only exception that I can imagine would be a modification to your KJ Liberty/Cherokee during your original hitch installation that prevents the Mopar hitch from fitting safely or resolving the safety risk stated in the recall.  Even then, as a consumer with a recall notice, you could still discuss this with the Chrysler/Jeep regional parts and service manager and negotiate a reasonable solution. 

 

Let us know how this turns out, Janet...

Moses



#6 JanetBrown

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Posted 25 October 2014 - 06:31 AM

Hi Moses, yep I have shared the US information with the dealership. Their answer was that if my vehicle needed the repair then they would remove my towhitch and replace it with a crossbeam. I would then NOT be able to have my towhitch replaced EVER or have any other towhitch fitted EVER. (My towhitch was fitted at point of purchase and is a WITTER towhitch - from my investigation this is the same as the MOPAR one - it fits around the fuel tank)This would obviously render this particular vehicle  unfit for purpose as I would not be able to tow - the reason why I bought this particular vehicle in the first place - to tow a horsebox!  However they then went on to say that IF my vehicle did require the repair I could sign a waiver form that would state that I did not want the repair carried out thereby keeping my tow hitch.  My comment was then that they were in effect suggesting that I drive around in a possibly unsafe car. How would this affect my insurance and any possible legal action in the event of an accident.  

 

So my next cause of action was to email the Chairman of Jeep UK (Fiat) Steve Zanlunghi  on Thursday evening laying out my concerns and asking for his comment.  I had a reply within 15 minutes of the opening of business on Friday. He informed me that he had passed my concerns to the Customer Service Department, who emailed me within two hours requesting further information on my vehicle and further contact details for me.  

 

Obviously this scenario may not occur if my vehicle is not deemed as needing the repair, but I am concerned that some people in this country would feel pressured into signing the waiver to enable themselves to keep the towhitch and not consider the possible consequences.

 

I await the response from customer services !!!!!



#7 Moses Ludel

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Posted 25 October 2014 - 01:08 PM

From what you share, Janet, the Witter hitch either meets the NHTSA standard or it could be simply replaced with the Mopar hitch that does meet the safety recall standard.  This is not complicated.  I would think that Chrysler sees it that way, too.

 

Curious how this turns out.  You may wind up with a new Mopar hitch in place of your existing hitch, especially if they are identical and the official Mopar hitch meets the NHTSA or UK recall standard.  Assuming that your existing Witter hitch was installed without unusual modifications, or at least in the same manner and detail as the Mopar hitch, you should have a simple remedy.

 

Moses



#8 DavidLambourne

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Posted 28 October 2014 - 09:43 AM

Hi Janet.

Also in the UK, we had our 2005 Jeep Cherokee booked in for the N46 recall this next Thursday, but were concerned about the dealership’s comments on signing a “disclaimer”. Hence my searching the internet, seeing your comments and joining this forum.

We purchased our Cherokee 4 years ago and have the previous owner’s service bills showing that the tow bar was fitted when the vehicle was 9 months old, (8,500 miles) by a Jeep main dealer at a cost of £547. (The Jeep is now 9 years old, 90,000.)

So the situation we have now is that unless the dealership on Thursday “passes the tow bar as acceptable” we either sign a disclaimer, with all the legal & insurance implications or we possess a Jeep with no tow bar.

We also bought our Jeep for towing a trailer.

We have decided to cancel our N46 appointment on Thursday and would be interested to hear about your responses from Jeep’s customer services.

I do appreciate that you have put a lot of work into pursuing Jeep UK (Fiat) so far.



#9 JanetBrown

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Posted Yesterday, 01:13 AM

Hi again, well the Jeep went into the stealership on Monday for the visual inspection (I had also requested a diagnostic check due to two error messages). The following has now occured:

1. Visual inspection carried out and car deemed as not requiring repair or fix

2. Intermediate service carried out (after they agreed to meet the price charged by my local mechanic) so that I would only be without my car for one dy rather than two

3. Diagnostic check proved to be 'inconclusive', their expensive diagnostic machine does not show the same codes that I get when rotating the ignition key, they are asking for technical advice from elsewhere!!

4. Several other 'faults' found on my vehicle, including some dealt with under warranty elsewhere.

 

So the upshot is that I sit here on Wednesday morning, still without my car, still not knowing about the diagnostic check and still unsure as to the cost of all this - I was quoted £120 ph for the diagnostic check, the service is an agreed price and the recall visual inspection is free.  I am also concerned at the 'new faults' that they have allegedly found. I have contacted the garage that carried out the work under warranty, they are also concerned and I have arranged to take the car to them upon its return to me for their opinion.   I really didn't want to take my car into the stealership, as I was concerned this would happen, given that this happened at a previous recall.  When all is done I will be updating Customer Services and Steve Zanlunghi with my thoughts and concerns.  I will let you now the outcome.



#10 JanetBrown

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Posted Yesterday, 01:21 AM

Hi Janet.

Also in the UK, we had our 2005 Jeep Cherokee booked in for the N46 recall this next Thursday, but were concerned about the dealership’s comments on signing a “disclaimer”. Hence my searching the internet, seeing your comments and joining this forum.

We purchased our Cherokee 4 years ago and have the previous owner’s service bills showing that the tow bar was fitted when the vehicle was 9 months old, (8,500 miles) by a Jeep main dealer at a cost of £547. (The Jeep is now 9 years old, 90,000.)

So the situation we have now is that unless the dealership on Thursday “passes the tow bar as acceptable” we either sign a disclaimer, with all the legal & insurance implications or we possess a Jeep with no tow bar.

We also bought our Jeep for towing a trailer.

We have decided to cancel our N46 appointment on Thursday and would be interested to hear about your responses from Jeep’s customer services.

I do appreciate that you have put a lot of work into pursuing Jeep UK (Fiat) so far.

 

 

OK from what I understood from my time at the stealership my current towbar was acceptable - it is a Witter one that was fitted at first registration by the Jeep dealer - for want of a better term it seems to protect the fuel tank as it sort of 'wraps the exposed area of the tank at the back - around it like a letter C - from my research as long as it is more than 40  or 44cm from the tank to the towbar, has no sharp edges and is not misshapen or damaged in any way you should be fine.  IMHO I would absolutely not consider signing the waiver, it may lead anyone to be open to all sorts of legal/insurance problems. I have yet to hear of anyone having the crossbeam fitted, but the recall notices have only been sent out recently in the UK whereas in the USA they have know about this for a couple of years.  Whereabouts are you based and which stealership are you taking your car to??



#11 DavidLambourne

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Posted Yesterday, 01:56 AM

Hi Janet,

We are based in the Welsh Borders and are taking the car to T J Vickers in Shrewsbury.

 

I'll have a look under the Jeep & measure up. Thanks for the info.

 

Pleased your towbar was OK. Hope you get your car back soon.



#12 JanetBrown

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Posted Yesterday, 04:58 AM

OK so sh*t has just hit the fan - phone call from mechanic to 'update' me - their diagnostic machine is still not giving the information they need and unlike the response yesterday it appears that today my car DOES need the crossbeam - I am absolutely furious and am still waiting three days into a 1 day booking to find out what is going to happen.



#13 DavidLambourne

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Posted Yesterday, 07:01 AM

Hi Janet,

 

Sorry to hear that.

 

I'm just pleased that I have cancelled my Thursday  "inspection" at the dealership.



#14 Yabrinya

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Posted Yesterday, 10:38 AM

Well - before we all get excited about a free trailer hitch...

I had my 2004 Jeep Liberty in for service yesterday and also asked the dealer to perform recall N46.  When I picked up my Jeep, I was told by the Service Consultant - the trailer hitch is not actaully to be used for towing, only for structural reinforcement and safety - HUH? 

Why install a trailer hitch that cannot be used for towning?

So for confirmation I called the Chrysler Group Recall Assistance Center phone # on the mailer and was told the exact same thing.  There is no wiring harness attached to the hitch since it is not intended to be used for towing.  If I choose to install the wiring harness and tow, that is on me. 

I have to wonder...if I sell this Jeep - how will the next owner know that the trailer hitch is only for decoration?





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