NHTSA Defect Investigations for the 2000 Dodge Stratus

The Office of Defects Investigations (ODI) is an office within the NHTSA which investigates serious safety problems in the design, construction or performance of vehicles. The NHTSA is authorized to order manufacturers to recall and repair vehicles, if the ODI finds a safety issue. NHTSA investigations for the 2000 Dodge Stratus, both ongoing and closed, are listed below:


    NHTSA Preliminary Evaluation #PE05036

    Component(s): Engine And Engine Cooling:Engine:Gasoline

    Summary: On June 29, 2005, ODI opened preliminary evaluation PE05-036 to investigate complaints of engine compartment fires in model year (MY) 1999-2000 Chrysler cirrus, Dodge Stratus and Plymouth breeze passenger cars ("JA cars"). the JA cars were introduced in MY 1995 and ended with MY 2000.they were produced with 2.0L, 2.4L and 2.5L engines.the incident data in the failure report summary of this resume are for subject vehicle engine compartment fires for all causes. According to DaimlerChrysler, evidence collected from field inspections of fire incident vehicles indicate that fluid leakage from the high pressure power steering hose is the most likely cause of the fires in the subject vehicles.the subject high pressure power steering hose is used in JA cars with both the 2.4L and 2.0L engines in MY 1995 through 2000.the fire incident rate in the MY 1999 through 2000 JA vehicles with 2.4L engines is significantly higher than in the prior model year vehicles using that engine and in any of the vehicles with the 2.0L or 2.5L engines.DaimlerChrysler is continuing its investigation of the issue and has provided periodic updates to ODI. An engineering analysis (EA05-019) has been opened to further assess the scope and frequency of the alleged defect in the subject vehicles.


    NHTSA Preliminary Evaluation #PE02082

    • Status:
    • Date Opened: November 06, 2002
    • Date Closed: April 23, 2003
    • Recall: No recall issued

    Component(s): Seat Belts

    Summary: There are no injuries or fatalities associated with this alleged defect.while conducting this investigation, ODI found that the subject cinches meet the load bearing requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 208, and that many of the reported failures were due to incorrect child safety seat installations. Additionally, the report rate is low (1.60/100K).the information available fails to establish the existence of a defect trend at this time.further allocation of Agency resources to this issue is unwarranted and the preliminary evaluation is being closed.


    NHTSA Engineering Analysis #EA05019

    • Status:
    • Date Opened: November 07, 2005
    • Date Closed: January 12, 2006
    • Recall: No recall issued

    Component(s): Engine And Engine Cooling
    Steering:Hydraulic Power Assist:Hose, Piping, And Connections

    Summary: ODI has received 29 reports of engine compartment fires that appear to be related to power steering hose leakage in model year (MY) 1999 and 2000 Chrysler cirrus, Dodge Stratus and Plymouth breeze vehicles (JA-cars) equipped with 2.4L engines.these reports indicate that the fire resulted from a power steering hose leak or that it occurred after an extended drive and shortly after being parked - conditions consistent with ignition of power steering fluid on a hot engine or exhaust surface during the vehicle hot soak period. On January 6, 2006, DaimlerChrysler corporation (DCC) notified NHTSA of a safety defect on MY 1999 and 2000 JA-cars built from July 1, 1998 to July 31, 2000 and equipped with 2.4L engines (recall 06V-001).the notification stated that ¿the high pressure power steering hose may prematurely heat, age and develop a leak. Power steering fluid leakage in the presence of an ignition source may result in an under hood fire."DCC indicated that it was aware of 94 complaints and field reports that may be related to this condition when it made the defect determination.to remedy the defect condition, DCC will replace the high pressure power steering hose on the affected vehicles with a new part made from a hose material with increased heat resistance capability. Consequently, this investigation is closed.ODI will monitor the effectiveness of the remedy and take further action if warranted.

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