really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
24,023 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2012 Jeep Patriot engine problems

engine problem

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2012 Jeep Patriot Owner Comments

problem #13

Jul 102016


  • 75,000 miles


While on the freeway, speed 65-70 my car suddenly lost all acceleration and a winding noise accompanies the loss. Sometimes the temp gauge or electric throttle light will light up. This has happened a total of 4 times over the past 2 months. All 4 times I have been able to wait an hour, start the car drives normally. After each occasion I've taken the car to a Chrysler Jeep dealer. Either they say it's a misfire, or I need a tune up or an ignition coil. I've since had all these repairs and the issue continues. This is very unsafe. I've had my kids in the car every time, thankfully I avoided getting rear ended and now drive in the slow lane not over 65 mph just to be prepared for my Jeep to do this again. I'm scared to drive this car.

- St Clair Shores, MI, USA

problem #12

Oct 282015


  • 50,000 miles
On October 28, 2015 with about 50,000 miles on it, my Jeep went into limp mode while I was driving 55 mph. Luckily I was able to pull over to the shoulder before getting rear-ended. Multiple lights turned on including the electronic throttle control, check engine, and traction control. I unhooked the battery and waited a few minutes. Hooked it back up and it seemed to be fine. Until March 13, 2016 when I was driving my daughter to the mall for her birthday. I was driving on a busy 4 lane road when my car seemed to turn off or loose all power while climbing a hill. Again, I just avoided being rear ended and pulled over to the side. I turned the key off, took it out, waited a few minutes and started it again and it worked. We went shopping and went back home without a problem, until the next day. March 14, 2016 while driving my daughters to school my Jeep went into limp mode. Luckily I was in the village and only going 30 mph, but all of the lights came on again-electronic throttle control, traction control, and check engine. I drove it back home and had it towed to the dealership. The dealership said that they did not know what was wrong with it. That after resetting the battery and performing a diagnostic check, only a vac leak was detected. They performed a check and confirmed (according to my invoice) that there were "no vacuum leaks at this time per code" and that "could be many things." And they "cleared codes and road tested ok at this time." So I drove it home from the dealership and to work today with no problems. When I went to go home, all the lights came on again. I do not feel safe and I feel stuck. No one seems to want to fix it because they do not know what to fix... and this is pathetic when even the dealership that I bought it from can not help. I am afraid someone will be killed if a solution is not found to this common problem with Jeep Patriots.

- Caledonia, NY, USA

problem #11

Jul 172015


  • 43,500 miles
I was driving my 2012 Jeep Patriot on the highway when simultaneously, the electronic throttle control light started blinking red, my car started to jerk forward, and lost power. This reoccurred several times on the way to get it looked at. Each time it happened, I had to shut the vehicle off, wait a few minutes, and then restart. I took it to a Jeep dealer and without even looking at it, the guy said it would be about $600 to fix (even though I still have power train warranty). This to me looks like this is a reoccurring problem that Jeep is aware of, but is not doing anything about. Luckily each time this happened, I was able to pull over and avoid an accident, others might not be so lucky. Until this problem is resolved, my Jeep is not safe to drive.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #10

Jun 242015


  • 36,730 miles


A notification came on saying gas cap, a week later check engine light came on. I went for the diagnostic it read trouble code P0456. Which is an evap system leak detected. There isn't a possible cause for this. Reported fixes are replaced evaporative system integrity monitor (esim) assembly or replace the fuel filler cap. I took the car to the dealer and they wouldn't do anything because I was over 36,000 miles ( I was under the three year mark). I've replaced the gas cap, but I still have the same problem, which is a noticeable decrease in gas mileage and acceleration. I have an extended warranty but it doesn't cover anything related to emissions....updated 09/28/15

- Schaumburg , IL, USA

problem #9

Jun 042014


  • 38,000 miles
While driving 75mph for 25miles the transmission overheat light came on and the Patriot started slowing itself down, on the interstate in heavy traffic, I read in the manual to pull over put in neutral till it cools off or just drive slow, I have had this happen 10 times since reaching 38,000 I contacted Chrysler and they advised I have a diagnostic done at dealer, I did and the dealer said it showed nothing. The dealer said there isn't anything I can do because it is doing what it is designed to do. They also added that they have had several similar cvt complaints from Patriot owners. Driving 75 mph should not overheat a transmission. It is very dangerous to be driving on the interstate when the Patriot slows itself down, I have almost got run over several times..I need Chrysler to acknowledge this problem and find a solution before I have an accident from it.

- Burns, TN, USA

problem #8

Jun 152014


  • miles
While on the interstate, I was in the fast lane attempting to pass another vehicle when I started to hear this strange noise and I began to lose acceleration and the transmission light with the circle around it came on. It was a very scary thing because I had a car behind me that was very close. I was able to pull over to the shoulder. I pulled out my owners manual to see what was going on. I followed the instructions by putting it in neutral and idling it for a few minutes. It eventually stopped making that noise and the light went out and I started out on my way again. I still had a 2 hour drive left on my trip and I was scared it would happen again before I could get home. I took it to my local Jeep dealership this morning and basically was told there were no sensors lighting up and they couldn't fix the problem if they couldn't replicate it. So I'm left with a car that I can't trust.

- Memphis , TN, USA

problem #7

Jul 252012

Patriot 4WD 4-cyl

  • 3,000 miles


While on the mountainous interstate we lost our acceleration and didn't know why. We were in a dangerous location just beginning to cross a bridge and we pulled off the road as far as we could. We did know that stopping on the bridge was a very dangerous location. At this point I was shaking and very scared. After a few minutes, I put the vehicle in 1st gear, and we actually moved. At this point I was just trying to get us past the bridge to a safer location. But as I went from 1 gear to another, we were slowly gaining momentum, so I kept going. Then June 9, 2014 we lost acceleration while traveling on the interstate again going through mountainous roads in nm. We were able to move slowly till we got to an off ramp and pulled into a gas station. I figured my fluid levels were good due to just having a $300 service performed with oil, etc. 2 weeks prior just before leaving on vacation. I then pulled out the owners manual to see just what that light was for. It was the transmission fluid overheating due to the mountainous terrain we were in. I had never heard of that before, so I called the dealership service area at Jeep in w. bell rd in peoria, AZ. The gentleman I talked to had no good answers for me. Then he mentioned that the certain type of transmission that was in the Jeep Patriot can overheat. We just needed to follow the instructions in the manual and sit in neutral till the temperature dropped. The vehicle loses acceleration as a protection for the transmission so it doesn't overheat and cause damage. Well, then... what about to the occupants that are in the vehicle being suddenly stranded in very unsafe locations.

- Glendale, AZ, USA

problem #6

Jul 072013

Patriot 4-cyl

  • 41,500 miles
Driving downhill on South I-15 through phelan at 4pm approximately 95 degrees outside. Accelerator became non-responsive. Rpms dropped to idle speeds. Vehicle was essentially 'coasting' with the engine running. Unable to accelerate at all. Pumping accelerator was resulting in nothing. Engine temp was not above halfway mark, about 1/3 tank of fuel. No engine warning lights. Changing gears electronically (automatic) not helpful. Was able to make it to off-ramp since I was traveling downhill. Engine promptly died when I came to a complete stop. Upon pulling the key out and re-inserting the electronic throttle control error light illuminated. Engine would not turn over. Attempted to reset computer not helpful. Approximately 45 minutes later (and phone calls for road-side service) etc light went away. Computer reset may have finally taken. Vehicle started with no problem. Drove the final 35 miles home without incident. Could have been a completely different situation had I not been traveling downhill at speed. Have not yet contacted dealer as I am out of new car warranty. Numerous other complaints about issues at speed have me very concerned.

- Riverside, CA, USA

problem #5

Feb 072013

Patriot 4-cyl

  • 6,500 miles
Stopped my 2012 Patriot at a light to turn left. I stepped on gas pedal to accelerate forward but no acceleration/revving occurred. When the pedal was depressed no resistance was felt but rather the pedal went to the floor with no acceleration/revving twice. I repeated this again with no acceleration/revving. On the third attempt the Patriot accelerated forward. The service department said to turn off engine and restart the vehicle to get the electrical system in sync. The vehicle was driven on highway for 30 minutes then 15 city traffic, air temp 38 degrees, pavement dry to wet (melting snow).

- Broadview Hts, OH, USA

problem #4

Feb 022013

Patriot 4-cyl

  • 12,600 miles
While traveling at highway speeds on interstate 5 near bakersfield California, and under cruise control, my 2012 Jeep Patriot stalled and lost power to the tires. At that moment, the check engine, electronic stability control, and electric systems (red lightning bolt) lights all began to flash. I was able to pull off the freeway safely. Being only a few miles from my eventual destination, I attempted to continue to drive the vehicle. I was able to keep the vehicle in gear at very low rpms (sub 2500). At rpms over 2500, however, the engine would misfire and I would experience no acceleration. With the vehicle still partially disabled, I was able to reach my destination. I turned the vehicle off, unloaded my luggage, and then returned to inspect the engine compartment. Seeing that all belt, hose, and cable connections were secure, and all fluids at their proper levels, I restarted the engine and drove the vehicle successfully for about a mile, with no evidence of the recent symptoms. Being that the vehicle is still so new, and well maintained, this particular incident was particularly alarming.

- Santa Barbara, CA, USA

problem #3

Mar 122012


  • 60 miles


The contact owns a 2012 Jeep Patriot. The contact stated that the vehicle randomly revved up at high speeds and then stalled. The contact stated that no warning lights illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact mentioned the vehicle was a five speed manual transmission. The manufatcurer was made aware of the failure and decided to send engineers to inspect the vehicle in order to make the assessment of the failure. The failure mileage was 60 and the current mileage was 16,000.pmb

- Boylston, MA, USA

problem #2

Oct 092012


  • 2,260 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Jeep Patriot. The contact stated that while entering a parking space, the vehicle suddenly accelerated without warning. The vehicle drove over the curve and crashed into a tree. The contact sustained injuries to her knee caps and the front passenger sustained bruised ribs. A police report was filed. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed that the electronic throttle body was defective and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 2,260.... updated 12/26/12

- Princeton Junction, NJ, USA

problem #1

Jul 222012


  • 3,150 miles
This is the first of 2 incidents I have had with this car. I was coming back into California from Arizona on the 40 West with cruise control on at 75 mph. Without indication, the throttle revved to 4500 RPM and the car lost speed. The engine was unresponsive to the gas pedal. I cancelled cruise control, and from the left lane was able to get over to the right shoulder. When we came to a stop, the engine died. The fuel gauge read just over 1/4 of a tank. The car would not start again. We called roadside assistance and they called a tow truck. The dealership was closed and we had to stay the night in a hotel. The next morning the car was taken to the dealership. The tech found no issues and was able to start the car with no incident. The diagnostic revealed no codes or errors. We were able to drive home the rest of the way. My Jeep is a 4X4 with the trail rated package.

- Chatsworth, CA, USA

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