Fiat Chrysler recalls 1 million Ram pickups due to potentially fatal air bag issue

Published: May 15, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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Fiat Chrysler announced the recall of roughly one million Dodge Ram pickups in North American. The automaker says a software bug that could prevent side airbag deployment in some circumstances is the cause of the recall.

More specifically, some side air bags are not functioning during a rollover. The company adds that Ram pickups seatbelts are also not deploying in such events.

The confirmation came on Friday from the company’s United States division. Fiat Chrysler says it is aware of one death, two injuries, and two collisions that may have been caused by the problem.

Customers with a Ram 1500 and 2500 pickup dated between 2013 and 2016 will be subjected to a recall. Additionally, 2014-2016 Ram 3500 pickups are also included. The company says 216,007 of the vehicles will be recalled in Canada. A further 21,668 will come from Mexico, 21,530 from the NAFTA region, and the remainder from the United States.

A computer model run by Fiat Chrysler shows that sensors within the affected vehicles fail when there is a significant underbody impact. This failure results in the temporary malfunction of the side air bag and seat belt tensioner.

The issue is not permanent and turning the vehicle off and back on restores the functionality. To fix the issue, the company will reprogram the software on recalled vehicles. Customers will not be expected to pay for the upgrade. Fiat Chrysler says it will begin the recall on June 23.