Transmission Fluid Leak May Cause Fire In Certain Stellantis Trucks

Chrysler’s parent company, Stellantis has issued a recall for certain 2020-2022 Ram 3500 and 2020-2023 Ram 2500 heavy-duty diesel trucks because of a problem that could result in an engine compartment fire. These trucks are equipped with Cummins 6.7L Turbo Diesel engines and 68RFE transmissions.

According to the defect report, a build-up of heat and pressure inside the transmission may result in transmission fluid being expelled from the dipstick tube. If the fluid comes in contact with an ignition source within the engine compartment, it could result in a vehicle fire. Stellantis is still working on a fix for this problem. Chrysler’s number for this recall is ZA3 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-835.


In the past two years, Stellantis’s Ram 2500 and Ram 3500 trucks have experienced a high number of recalls.

Owners Are Advised To Park Outdoors Due To Fire Hazard

It began in February 2021, when an investigation was opened into engine compartment fires in certain 2021-2022 Ram 2500, 3500 pickup trucks and 2021-2022 Ram 3500, 4500, and 5500 cab chassis vehicles equipped with Cummins 6.7L Turbo Diesel engines. An electrical short within the solid-state intake heater grid relay could result in a fire, even when the ignition was turned off. Owners are advised to park these vehicles outside and away from structures and other vehicles until the problem has been fixed. Approximately 131,000 vehicles were affected by this recall.


Side curtain Air Bag May Not Deploy Properly

In November 2021 an airbag recall was issued for a small number of 2021-2022 RAM 1500, 2500 and 3500 trucks. The side air bag inflatable curtain (SABIC) assemblies in these vehicles were manufactured with a low gas mass that would result in an airbag non-deployment or slow deployment or a high gas mass that could result in aggressive airbag deployment and an increased risk of occupant injury in certain crash scenarios.


Stellantis RAM Electrical Problems

Stellantis issued three more recalls before their most recent for transmission fluid leaks that could cause fires. In March 2022, approximately 370, 000 Dodge Duango, RAM 2500, and Ram 3500 trucks were repaired for an electronic stability control (ECS) indicator light that could fail to illuminate during a control problem, increasing the risk of a crash.

In June 2022, certain 2022 Ram 1500, 2500 pickup trucks, and 3500 Cab Chassis vehicles with GVWR less than 10,000 lbs, experienced a radio software problem that could prevent the rear view image from displaying. These vehicles failed to comply with the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) for rear visibility.

In August 2022 a misaligned capacitor inside the ECM of certain 2022 Ram 2500, 3500, 4500 and 5500 trucks, could cause an electrical short, and a loss of drive power.

If your vehicle is experiencing repeated problems it could be a Lemon. Know your Lemon Law Rights. If you have any questions about your rights and the California Lemon Law, please call our office at 1-888-395-3666 and get some great Lemon Law advice!

Hyundai and Kia will be contacting the owners of certain 2021-2023 vehicles because of an internal fault affecting the electric oil pump in their transmissions. These automobiles are equipped with 2.5L turbocharged gasoline direct injection (T-GDI) engines and 8-speed dual-clutch transmissions (DCT)

Hyundai first became aware of the problem in September 2022 when the NHTSA’s ODI contacted them about a 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz allegedly experiencing a loss of motive power while driving at various speeds. An investigation into the problem identified an internal fault with the DCT’s high-pressure electric oil pump as the likely cause of the vehicle entering “fail-safe” driving. Based on the information received, Hyundai decided to conduct a recall for affected vehicles. Because the same components are used on certain Kia vehicles, Kia also decided to conduct a recall.

The vehicles affected include:

2022 Hyundai Elantra N
2022 Hyundai Kona N
2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz
2021-2022 Hyundai Santa Fe
2021-2022 Hyundai Sonata
2021-2022 Hyundai Veloster N
2021-2023 Kia K5
2021-2022 Kia Sorento

According to the defect report, “The electric oil pump within the 8-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT) may experience an internal fault due to insufficient soldering of a component of the electric oil pump circuit board. As a result, the subject vehicles may set a diagnostic trouble code with warnings and allow the vehicle to be driven normally for 20-30 seconds, followed by complete loss of motive power due to disengagement of the transmission drive gears.” If this happens, drivers will hear an audible warning chime, the message “stop safely immediately” on the instrument cluster and an illuminated malfunction indicator light (MIL).

Hyundai has received 229 unique incidents in the US related to this problem. Kia has identified 36 alleged incidents of loss of motive power due to an internal fault with the electric oil pump. Hyundai’s number for this recall is 236 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-746. Kia’s number for this recall is SC250 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-760.

 Automotive Defect InvestigationThe National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issues safety standards that require automobile manufacturers to recall vehicles that have safety-related defects. An important first step to identifying a problem is to keep a database of complaints received from owners. Similar complaints from a number of owners about the same product are usually a good indication that a problem could exist. The NHTSA will review the complaints and, in most cases, open an investigation. If the investigation leads to a recall, the NHTSA will monitor the effectiveness and management of the recall, including the filing of recall notices, communicating with owners regarding the recalls, and tracking the completion rate of each recall.

The NHTSA currently has three investigations affecting certain Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep vehicles.

Stalling And Loss Of Motive Power Due To Transmission Malfunction
2019-2021 Chrysler Pacifica and 2019-2020 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid

The Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) has received 40 complaints alleging incidents of stalling and loss of motive power in certain 2019-2021 Chrysler Pacifica plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). Most incidents occurred at speeds greater than 25 MPH and resulted in a vehicle stall. The loss of motive power was often accompanied by a dashboard warning message indicating a charging fault. A review of vehicle data showed that the malfunction was correlated with an internal transmission fault. The ODI is opening an investigation to assess the scope, frequency, cause, and potential safety-related consequences of the alleged defect.

Crankshaft Or Camshaft Sensor Failures
2016 Dodge Journey, 2016 Jeep Compass, and 2016 Jeep Patriot

In December 2016, the NHTSA issued a recall (16V-907) that identified crankshaft or camshaft sensor failures on certain 2016 Dodge Journey, Jeep Compass, and Jeep Patriot vehicles. According to the recall report, the crankshaft or camshaft sensor may work intermittently, possibly causing the engine to stall while driving. Following this recall, the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) has continued to receive consumer complaints from owners who say they are experiencing crankshaft or camshaft failures on similar vehicles not included in the recall. The NHTSA has opened a Recall Query (RQ) to further assess the scope, frequency, and safety consequences of the alleged defect.

Electronic Parking Brake (EPB) Inadvertently Activates While Driving
2014-2020 Jeep Cherokee

The Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) has received 80 complaints for 2014-2020 Jeep Cherokees alleging the Electronic Parking Brake (EPB) activated while the vehicle was in motion. Based on repair invoices, the problem is caused by water leaking into the vehicle and damaging the EPB module which inadvertently activates the vehicle to a stop. The ODI is aware of recall 15V-393 that addresses water ingress affecting the power lift-gate module on the same population of vehicles. The lift-gate module can potentially catch fire as a result of the water damage. Both the lift-gate and EPB modules are located in a similar area of the vehicle.

If your vehicle is experiencing repeated problems like the ones listed above, it could be a Lemon. Know your Lemon Law Rights. If you have any questions about your rights and the California Lemon Law, please call our office at 1-888-395-3666 and get some great Lemon Law advice!

The owners of certain 2020 Mercedes Benz GLC350E 4Matic SUVs could experience a loss of drive power due to a problem affecting the wiring harness going to the transmission in their vehicles.

In September 2020, Mercedes Benz first became aware of the problem after receiving a customer complaint regarding the loss of drive power in their vehicle. As similar complaints regarding GLC-Class vehicles increased Mercedes began an investigation into the problem. A production quality survey was initiated to double check the wiring harness installation in two plants producing the LC-Class. Mercedes investigated possible commonalities between the reported failures of two different platforms that are manufactured at three different plants. Mercedes also asked the wiring harness supplier to analyze any possible cause involving the wiring harness.

The investigation identified the root cause of the problem as an error in the installation of the wiring harness. Mercedes studied the potential effect of the transmission wiring harness production deviation on vehicle safety and identified the potentially affected vehicles. On July 1st 2022, they determined that there was a potential safety risk and decided to conduct a recall of all the potentially affected vehicles.

According to the defect report, the routing of the transmission wiring harness in certain 2020 GLC-Class (253 platforms) 4-Matic vehicles may not meet current production specifications. Due to deviations in the wiring harness length and the assembly process, the harness could come in contact with the front drive shaft and damage it over time. If this happens, drivers could experience a loss of propulsion and an increased risk of an accident. If the failure occurs, the driver would be made aware through a warning message in the instrument cluster.

Owners receiving notices will be asked to return to their dealers to have the transmission wiring harness inspected and replaced as necessary. The NHTSA campaign number for this recall is 22V-494.

Some 2021 Ford F-150 trucks could unexpectedly shift into neutral while driving. The unexpected loss of engine power could increase the chance of an accident.

In February 2022, an issue was brought to Ford’s Critical Concern Review Group (CCRG) about certain 2021 F-150 vehicles equipped with 3.5L GTDI, 2.7L, and 5.0L engines, along with the 10R80 transmission. These trucks were experiencing an increase in Transmission Fluid Pressure along with a Transmission Fluid Pressure Low Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) of P0868. This DTC would falsely activate and cause the transmission to shift into a neutral state while the truck was driven. Once the false activation occurs, the vehicle will coast to a stop and the electronic shifter will attempt to engage Park. Once the vehicle comes to a complete stop, the electronic shifter will automatically shift into Park.

According to the engineering investigation, one of the power-train diagnostic logic software branches was turned on in error when these vehicles were produced. Under certain conditions, this diagnostic logic could inadvertently activate the pump gear failure detection logic even though the hardware is still functioning properly. When this happens, the transmission on-board diagnostics will set the DTC P0868, turn on a Wrench Light telltale, and the vehicle’s transmission will shift into a neutral state. As the vehicle slows to a speed below 2 mph/3kph, the electronic shifter will attempt to engage the Park function and will automatically shift into Park when the vehicle comes to a complete stop. The transmission function can be restored by a key-off/key-on cycle.

Between October 2021 and February 2022 there have been 28 warranty claims and one Customer Contact Center report to Ford that potentially related to this concern.

Dealers will correct the problem by updating the Power-train Control Module (PCM) software. Ford’s number for this recall is 22S15 and the NHTSA campaign number is 22V-188.

Our client was very excited when they purchased their new 2017 Cadillac Escalade.

His first visit to the Cadillac dealership was on January 22, 2018 because the passenger running boards were sticking at times.

He was back at the dealership on June 20th to have the running boards looked at again.

The next visit was on November 20th for numerous items which included the passenger side step not always operating, the driver’s side step not working at times, at idle gear there was a roughness to the vehicle like the engine was stumbling and there was a pinging coming from the engine. Other problems were when at a stop the transmission would suddenly lunge forward, when accelerating at lower gears the transmission would lunge into gear, the front brakes were making noise and the USB was not working.

The last visit to the dealership was on January 22, 2019. The complaints were that the brakes were making noise, driver’s side running board would not always work, the passenger side door panel was not secured at the top, the vehicle exhibited a rough idle in gear and you could feel the Escalade shake and the transmission, on acceleration, was jerking and jolting at low gears.

At this point our client called our office to find out if his vehicle might be a lemon. He spoke with California Lemon Law Attorney, Barry L. Edzant. Barry requested he send some documents for review. Soon there after our office was retained and a demand letter was sent to General Motors Corporation to buy back our client’s 2017 Cadillac Escalade under the California Lemon Law.

GMC agreed to repurchase the vehicle which included reimbursing our client for his down payment, all payments made, his registration, pay off the balance minus a mileage fee allowed under the California Lemon Law. They also paid attorney fees.

Our client was very happy with the buyback of his vehicle. If you think your vehicle might be a lemon because of repeat problems that the dealership is unable to fix or the vehicle has been out of service in the hands of an authorized dealership for 30 days or more (the 30 days do not have to be consecutive or for the same problem) please call our office at 888-395-3666 for a free consultation.

Chrysler will be contacting the owners of certain 2019-2020 Ram 2500 and 2019-2020 Ram 3500 pickups equipped with six-speed automatic (68RFE) transmissions, because of a problem affecting the transmissions in their trucks.

According to the defect report, these vehicles could experience a build up of pressure and heat inside the transmission strong enough to expel fluid from the dip stick tube. If the fluid comes in contact with the turbocharger or other ignition sources within the engine compartment, it could lead to a fire. Vehicle occupants may notice odd smalls, noises or transmission surging prior to a vehicle fire.

Dealers will fix the problem by replacing the transmission valve body separator plate and reprogramming the powertrain control module. Chrysler’s number for this recall is W03 and the NHTSA campaign number is 20V-043.

The Escalade is a full-size luxury SUV engineered and manufactured by Cadillac. It was Cadillac’s first major entry into the luxury SUV market in response to competition from Mercedes-Benz, Lexus and Ford. Today, Cadillac makes their Escalade in an EXT, ESV and a hybrid version as well.

The 2015-2016 Cadillac Escalade models have received some of the highest complaints and recalls of all the model years. Although there have been no recalls for transmission problems, complaints are common. Drivers say there is a “distinct clunking and surging when accelerating and decelerating, and the transmission becomes stuck in gear.” The 2015 Cadillac models have 167 manufacturer communications / TSB’s affecting the power train, many which recommend flushing and changing the transmission fluid. The problem is a common complaint with many 2015-2019 Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC owners and is part of an ongoing class action lawsuit between vehicle owners and GM.

Drivers of certain 2015-2020 Cadillac Escalade vehicles believe that shaking and vibrations are caused by the same transmission defect, but some attorneys say the symptoms are caused by a defective drive shaft. The problem has been so wide spread, it has been coined “The Chevy Shake”. A few owners say they fixed the problem by replacing the aluminum drive shaft with a custom steel drive shaft, but GM continues to replace parts with the same defective parts.

Electrical defects are common in many newer Cadillac Escalade models. Heating and air conditioning are the top, with exterior lighting and software problems following close behind. Other complaints include: thermostat gives wrong information or just doesn’t work, no control of audio, Bluetooth intermittently disconnects, complete failure of the instrument cluster, repeated electrical shorts and temporary loss of the electric power steering.

Do you think your Cadillac Escalade could be a LEMON?… Fill out the above form or call us now for a free case evaluation.