Nearly 300,000 Ram 1500 pickup trucks have been recalled, due to a risk that the airbags and seat belts may fail in the event of an accident, increasing the risk of injury to the driver and occupants.
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced the Chrysler Ram 1500 recall on June 6, indicating that a software error may cause the airbags and seat belt pretensioners to not work when the vehicle is turned back on.
The impacted vehicles are equipped with an Occupant Restraint Controller (ORC) software, which runs a memory erase process when the vehicle is turned off. According to the recall, an interruption to this process may result in failures of the air bags and seat belt pretentioners, which are controlled by the ORC system.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) first learned of the potential issue on April 8, 2019 when their engineering department notified FCA US Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance (VSRC) of an event causing air bag function failure.
The manufacturer discovered during their investigation that the software may contain a defect that allows the power-down clean up events to corrupt the modules flash memory. The result of this corruption could potentially cause fault codes, illumination of the air bag warning lamp and disabling of the airbags and seat belt pretensioners.
By May 23, FCA concluded their investigation and determined a safety defect requiring a recall was necessary.
The recall includes approximately 295,981 model year 2019 through 2020 Ram 1500 trucks that were manufactured by FCA US LLC from October 31, 2017 through May 21, 2019. The impacted vehicles were distributed across the U.S. to licensed dealers.
Chrysler released they will begin notifying owners of the recall and will provide instructions on how to schedule a free repair at their local dealer, where dealers will be instructed to reprogram or replace the ORC.
The recall is expected to begin on July 20, 2019. Customers with additional questions or concerns regarding the recall may contact Chrysler customer service at 1-800-853-1403 and reference the recall campaign numbers V61 and V71.