Judge finds evidence Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Gladiator clutch recalls fixed any clutch problems.

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Jeep Clutch Recall May End Class Action Lawsuit
Judge finds evidence Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Gladiator clutch recalls fixed any clutch problems.

— A Jeep clutch recall may put an end to a class action lawsuit that alleges Jeep Wranglers and Jeep Gladiators are equipped with defective clutches.

According to the Jeep clutch lawsuit, the affected vehicles are 2018-2021 Jeep Wrangler (2 door), 2018-2021 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited (4 door) and 2020-2021 Jeep Gladiator SUVs equipped with manual transmissions.

The Jeeps are also equipped with 3.6L V6 engines that produce "an advertised 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque.”

The five Jeep owners who filed the clutch class action lawsuit allege the clutch friction plate slips on the flywheel which creates high temperatures that can cause a fire.

Fiat Chrysler issued two Jeep clutch recalls (here and here), but the class action lawsuit asserts the software update offered as a remedy really only causes owners to lose.

According to the plaintiffs, the Jeep clutch recalls, “effectively neuter” the Jeeps by “depriv[ing] Class Members of the benefit of their bargains — a class Vehicle equipped with a 6-speed manual transmission and a 3.6LV6 engine that produces 285 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque.”

Motion to Dismiss the Jeep Clutch Lawsuit

In its motion to dismiss, Chrysler told the judge the class action lawsuit should be dismissed because of the two Jeep clutch recalls. The automaker argues it provided documented proof the clutch recalls, performed for free, fixed the clutch defects.

Chrysler argues the lawsuit should be dismissed because the plaintiffs don't have standing to bring their claims, and the clutch recalls moot their claims.

FCA also argues one plaintiff had a Jeep that didn't have any clutch problems before or after the recalls, a fact that caused Judge Judith E. Levy to dismiss his claims.

The judge also ruled the other four plaintiffs didn't provide enough evidence to support their claims and didn't explain how the recalls failed to fix their Jeeps.

However, the judge did grant the plaintiffs another shot at their claims.

"These Plaintiffs are granted an opportunity to present evidence demonstrating that they have standing and that their claims are not mooted by the recall. Failure to do so will result in dismissal." — Judge Levy

Those plaintiffs are Jeep owners Dean Myslivecek, Paul Caputo, Christopher Chow, Michael Busovicki and Kevin Schaffner.

The Jeep clutch lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan (Southern Division): Myslivecek, et al., v. FCA US LLC.

The plaintiffs are represented by Bursor & Fisher.


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