Chrysler Group announced the recall of 919,545 Jeep SUVs from the 2002 to 2004 model years because the airbags could deploy inadvertently.
On the recalled cars, which are Grand Cherokee and Liberty SUVs, a part in airbag control modules may fail, causing the airbags to deploy, according to documents filed with the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Chrysler.
The NHTSA said a failure of that module could cause the front airbags or side curtain airbags to deploy inadvertently while the SUVs are being operated, increasing the risk of injury or accident.
Chrysler said that of the vehicles recalled, 744,822 were in the United States, 49,430 in Canada, 21,828 in Mexico and 103,465 outside North America. About half of the recalled SUVs are Grand Cherokee and the other half Liberty.
Chrysler’s dealers will install a supplemental jumper harness to the airbag control module at no cost to owners, with the recall expected to begin in January.
In October 2011, NHTSA opened a preliminary investigation following complaints of inadvertent airbag deployments in Liberty SUVs. In January 2012, the probe was upgraded to an engineering analysis to include the Grand Cherokee SUVs.
The investigation found 215 cases of inadvertent airbag deployments which caused 81 minor injuries involving both SUVs in the U.S. No crashes were found to have been caused by the issue.