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RECALL: Jeep® Recalls 42,887 Wrangler & Gladiator For Overheating Clutch Issues:

Could Lead To Fire...

Stellantis North America has issued a recall for 42,887 Jeep® Wrangler and Gladiator vehicles equipped with the D478 6-speed manual transmission. According to the recall notice, owners might experience overheating of the clutch intermediate pressure plate. Extreme overheating of the pressure plate may cause the clutch to fracture.

2020 Jeep Wrangler Willys Edition. (Jeep).

In some circumstances, the clutch pressure plate may become overheated through friction, which may lead the pressure plate to rapidly fracture. When a pressure plate fractures, it may result in cracks or holes in the transmission case, allowing heated debris to be expelled from the transmission case. Heated debris expelled from the transmission case may come in contact with combustible materials in the vehicle, potentially leading to a fire. A fire can result in an increased risk of occupant injury and injury to persons outside the vehicle. In addition, this condition may lead to the generation of road debris, which may be a hazard to other drivers.

In some circumstances, the drivers may smell a burnt clutch odor prior to the failure.

2019 Jeep® Wrangler Rubicon with D478 Manual Transmission. (Jeep).

The vehicles affected include 2018 to 2021 Jeep Wrangler (JL) models built between August 23rd, 2017 and January 22nd, 2021, as well as 2020 to 2021 Jeep Gladiator (JT) models manufactured from December 21st, 2018 to January 22nd, 2021.

Investigation Chronology:

  • On October 28th, 2020, Stellantis Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance (VSRC) organization opened an investigation as a result of a vehicle fire on a 2021 Jeep Gladiator at the company’s Toledo North Assembly Complex.
  • During the weeks of November 1st, 2020 and November 8th, 2020, VSRC investigators and engineering reviewed field inputs and warranty data on the Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Gladiator clutch assembly.
  • On November 13th, 2020 Stellantis received delivery of a 2020 Jeep Wrangler purchased back from a customer to analyze the failed clutch assembly.
  • On November 27th, 2020 VSRC conducted a scene examination in Nampa, Idaho of a subject vehicle involved in a transmission-related fire event.
  • On December 14th, 2020 VSRC conducted a scene examination in Flint, Michigan of another subject vehicle involved in a transmission-related fire event.
  • As of January 21st, 2021, Stellantis identified approximately 7 customer assistance records, 6 warranty claims, and 1 field report potentially related to this issue.
  • As of January 21st, 2021, Stellantis is aware of 1 accident and 0 injuries potentially related to this issue.
  • On January 21st, 2021 Stellantis determinedthrough the Vehicle Regulations Committee, to conduct a voluntary
    safety recall of the affected vehicles.

According to Stellantis, there is no defective part. The issue is the result of design specification and the remedy will be a software update for the vehicle that mitigates safety risks related to the clutch assembly.

2020 Jeep® Gladiator Rubicon. (Jeep).

Stellantis will conduct a voluntary safety recall to reprogram the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) software to reduce engine torque capability when clutch assembly temperatures rise to a level that may damage the inner pressure plate. Dealers will be notified of the launch of this safety recall by way of established communication methods. This recall is estimated to begin on March 19th, 2021. The number for this recall is Y01.

Owners may contact Stellantis North America customer service at 1-800-853-1403.

Robert S. Miller

Robert S. Miller is a diehard Mopar enthusiast who lives and breathes all that is Mopar. The Michigander is not only a Co-Editor for MoparInsiders.com, 5thGenRams.com, and HDRams.com but an automotive photographer. He is an avid fan of offshore powerboat racing, which he travels the country to take part in.

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