Chrysler is conducting a voluntary safety recall of 278,000 of its pickup trucks and SUVs to fix potentially loose rear axle fasteners. This recall adds to a recall last October of some 44,000 Ram pickups and Dodge Dakota SUVs for the same issue.

A notice on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website lists the number of vehicles potentially affected by this expanded vehicle at 278,222. Affected vehicles include certain 2009 through 2012 Ram 1500 pickups, 2009 through 2011 Dodge Dakota pickups, 2009 Dodge Durango SUVs, and 2009 Chrysler Aspen SUVs.

The NHTSA bulletin identifies the affected vehicle recall population as follows:

The problem

At issue is the rear axle pinion nut which may loosen due to the omission of an adhesive patch. Should the rear axle pinion nut loosen, it could cause the rear axles to lock up, resulting in a loss of vehicle control and an increased risk of crash.

Documentation from Chrysler (PDF) states that there are approximately 15 reports of accidents and no reports of minor injury in 2009 and 2010 model year vehicles related to this issue. This excludes those already reported for the earlier recall.

What Chrysler will do

Chrysler will notify owners of affected vehicles and dealers will install a pinion nut retainer at no charge. The Chrysler safety recall, identified as N08, an expansion of 12V-474, is expected to begin in March.

In the meantime, owners of vehicles involved in the recall with any questions or concerns may contact Chrysler at 1-800-247-9753.

Alternatively, owners of vehicles involved in the campaign may contact NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 or go to  Reference the NHTSA campaign ID No. 13V038000.



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