— A Jeep Cherokee recall has been ordered for more than 82,500 SUVs to prevent them from unintentionally rolling away.
The recalled 2014-2017 Jeep Cherokees are equipped with two-speed power transfer units (PTUs) that may move between the "differential input splines and the transmission output shaft may cause some input spline teeth to wear off, which may eventually cause a loss of engagement between the transmission and the differential inside the PTU."
This will block power from being transferred between the front wheels and the transmissions, causing a loss of motive power while the Cherokees are in motion. In addition, the PARK function won't work when the Cherokee is stationary.
A loss of motive power is a dangerous condition, and a loss of the PARK function can cause the Cherokee to suddenly roll away.
Fiat Chrysler (FCA US) opened an investigation in February based on reports alleging vehicles were losing their PARK functions and losing motive power while in motion. Chrysler dealers reported the most common repair was the replacement of the PTU.
Engineers reviewed warranty claims related to PTU replacements and found failures of the differential input splines.
The automaker learned of 829 warranty claims which had been filed prior to May 28, 2020, and one person says the problem caused a crash. However, Chrysler doesn't know of any injuries caused by the PTU problems.
According to Chrysler, about 67,248 Jeeps are affected in the U.S., more than 13,600 are recalled in Canada, 716 are recalled in Mexico and nearly 10,000 are affected outside North America.
FCA is also recalling about 2,669 two-speed PTUs sold as replacement parts.
FCA says dealers will flash software that will allegedly maintain propulsion by engaging rear-wheel-drive and the parking brakes will be activated if a failed input spline occurs. The software update will also ensure warning lights will be illuminated if the input splines fail.
The Jeep Cherokee recall is expected to begin July 31, 2020.
Owners may contact FCA at 800-853-1403 and use recall number W47.