Jeep just announced the recall of 63,000 Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrids. Some drivers have experienced unexpected power outages, with two accidents and one injury reported. The recall is for 2021 through 2023 Wrangler 4xe models. As of early November, Jeep says it is aware of 112 customer support records, 196 warranty claims, 65 field reports, two accidents and one potential injury associated with the software problem.
Why did Jeep issue a recall on the Wrangler 4xe?
The reason for the unexpected power outage is due to communication problems causing false diagnostic actions taken by the electronic system, according to the documents provided. Jeep became aware of the issue in September 2021. It then analyzed stall reports combined with vehicle histories to determine the issue.
The solution is to update the codes in the calibration software for the Transmission Control Module, Hybrid Control Processor, and Auxiliary Hybrid Control Processor. This software update has already been applied to 2023 Wrangler 4xe models, so they are not involved in this recall campaign. Parent company Stellantis says previous repair costs related to the stalling problem will be covered by the recall. Owners must submit repair receipts to Jeep to recover repair costs.
Is this the first Jeep Wrangler 4xe recall?
This is not the first recall of the Jeep Wrangler 4xe. In October, Jeep recalled 13,722 4x’s due to improperly placed battery fuses. These 200 amp fuses can create higher temperatures which can lead to failure. The glitch caused similar stalling issues as this latest recall. There have been no reports of heat related fires.
In late December 2021, another 4xe recall involved 2022 models. In a rare case, 4xes built with the digital instrument cluster could experience odometer issues. In some cases, the odometers stopped at 13,342 miles. The problem was first noticed on the Wrangler assembly line during software checks. At that time a software update was performed. Now, it looks like there were still 2,900 hybrid Jeeps that had the problem.
Jeep was concerned that without the odometer working, owners would miss critical maintenance notices. Without proper maintenance, some components could fail, which could cause multiple components to fail. The solution is to replace the indicator groups. Jeep will reimburse owners who have already paid for gauge cluster replacements.
When will the owners be notified?
So this latest recall today is the third to affect the electronic software in the 4xe. The hybrid Jeep made its debut in September 2020. A class action lawsuit was filed in September 2021 over these earlier software issues, according to classaction.org.
In January 2023, owners will receive notification letters. If they have questions, they can contact Customer Service at 800-853-1403. They can also call NHTSA’s Safety Hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit the NHTSA website.