The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched an investigation of the 2005 Chrysler Crossfire convertible. According to an agency bulletin (PDF), the rear windows on those vehicles may detach over time.
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Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is aware of the issue, and in September 2011, the company offered owners an extended warranty to cover the cost of repairing or replacing the back glass window. However, since the problem seems related to heat and/or humidity, that offer was limited to vehicles "originally shipped to dealers (retailers) in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas". The warranty covered the first ten years of the vehicle's life or the first 100,000 miles, whichever came first.
Unfortunately for FCA, at least one Crossfire owner whose car was originally shipped to a dealer outside the aforementioned area has experienced the same problem. And of course, the car isn't covered by the extended warranty. NHTSA's investigation aims to determine whether the geographically limited warranty is fair to consumers.
To date, NHTSA has received 158 complaints about the problem, though no reports of accidents or injuries have been filed.
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NHTSA is in the process of assessing the new complaint. If it's found to have merit, NHTSA will likely launch a preliminary evaluation of the Crossfire, working in conjunction with FCA to note patterns of problems in the model. Depending on how that goes, the process could move to stage two of the recall process, the engineering analysis, where NHTSA would attempt to recreate the problem in lab settings. Those tests would determine whether NHSTA asks for a full or partial recall of the Crossfire.
Should NHTSA do so, the recall could affect as many as 15,000 vehicles registered in the U.S. Stay tuned.
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