Excessive rust has been found on your all-new Jeep® Wrangler
Jeep® Wrangler Sport (JL) owner Mike Jeffress couldn’t believe it when he discovered a troubling problem with his recently acquired vehicle. On his way home from the local Suncoast Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram dealership, Jeffress felt an unusual brake sensation, prompting him to return the vehicle for inspection immediately.
To his surprise, the dealership’s service technician discovered “excessive rust” on all four rotors, prompting them to be immediately replaced. This raised questions for Jeffress as to how a vehicle with only 199 miles could show such extensive wear.
After closely examining the paperwork, Jefferis discovered that the technician had observed three separate instances of excessive rust. Disturbed by this revelation, he inspected the undercarriage himself, taking photographs that revealed rust and corrosion in various areas. This prompted him to return the Jeep for further evaluation.
Jeffress expressed amazement, saying, “The rust has gotten to the point where it’s actually distorting the metal. You can see the corrosion and you can see the screws that can be difficult to remove.”
The matter has been escalated to Jeep’s parent company, Stellantis. After Jefferis received a simple offer of making two car payments and advising him to continue his lease for four years, Shannon Behnken, a consumer investigator for WFLA, intervened. The dealership owner, unsure of the origin of the rust, deferred the matter to Stellantis.
Behnken sent evidence, including photographs and papers, to decision-makers at Stellantis. In response, Stellantis issued a statement acknowledging the anomaly, and highlighted recent advances in the Wrangler’s anti-corrosion coating, which is now 10 percent thicker than its predecessor. In addition, Stellantis reiterated its commitment to a strict pre-delivery inspection protocol.
“We recently celebrated the delivery of our five-millionth Jeep Wrangler. The current model benefits from a corrosion-resistant layer that is 10% thicker than that used on the previous generation of the vehicle. Furthermore, Stellantis urges its dealers to adhere to a strict pre-delivery inspection protocol,” a spokesperson said. On behalf of Stellantis, he said, “We regret this generous customer’s experience and are pleased that we have reached a satisfactory resolution.”
Stellantis lamented Jefferis’ traumatic experience. They announced their decision: to buy back the Jeep, offer Jeffress a discount on the replacement vehicle, and begin a comprehensive investigation into the accident. A Stellantis spokesperson revealed that they are examining the delivery route to gain insight into how this unprecedented rust occurred.
Vehicle identification reports indicate the Jeep reached Ft. Myers agent in late December 2022 and was later purchased by a Seminoles agent in January. Stellantis is committed to performing a comprehensive vehicle inspection to uncover the root cause. Depending on their findings, the Jeep may undergo repairs and be sold as used, or it may be deemed beyond repair and scrapped.
In the wake of this exceptional situation, Stellantis is committed to ensuring the quality and safety of its vehicles, and reaffirms its commitment to customer satisfaction and safety.
Source: WFLA NBC 8