Fiat-Chrysler Leans on Dealers To Reform Recall Practices | Edmunds

Fiat-Chrysler Leans on Dealers To Reform Recall Practices

WASHINGTON Fiat-Chrysler is preparing to launch a new Dealer Recall Network pilot program to collect and share best practices on recall administration at the dealership level, the automaker said in a public hearing last week on its handling of recent recalls.

The automaker said it has implemented enhancements to its dealer Web site, expanded service marketing reminders and increased its use of social media to engage with customers about safety recalls.

It is developing a dealer-training program called "Recall Ready," which is expected to launch this summer. The program will emphasize the importance of completing safety recalls at the dealership level.

To combat "recall fatigue," Fiat-Chrysler also has launched customer-appreciation programs for owners whose vehicles were subject to multiple recalls.

"We are now actively tracking customer feedback after a recall is launched to ensure that we are responding rapidly to any issues related to campaign execution or remedy effectiveness,' said Scott Kunselman, Fiat-Chrysler vice president for vehicle safety and regulatory compliance, in written testimony.

The update came during a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration public hearing on July 2 to determine whether the automaker has "failed to remedy safety defects and issue required notices in 23 recalls," NHTSA said.

The hearing focused on the recalls of 11 million vehicles since 2013.

NHTSA said it will continue to accept public comments submitted to the Federal Register through July 17 and will make its final determination in the coming weeks.

NHTSA could penalize Fiat-Chrysler by issuing fines or ordering the automaker to buy back unrepaired vehicles.

Edmunds says: Dealers will be on the front lines when it comes to Fiat-Chrysler's improvements in its recall completion rates.

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