NHTSA Closes Probe Into 1.8 Million Chrysler and Dodge Minivans

Apr 09, 2015 05:11 PM EDT | Matt Mercuro

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have closed a probe into almost 1.9 million older Chrysler minivans after receiving complaints from consumers that their engines were stalling after refueling.

The agency and Chrysler received a combined 720 complaints about an issue in Chrysler Town and Country and Dodge Grand Caravan models, according to a NHTSA recent investigation post.

"After completing this evaluation, NHTSA has concluded that further investigation is unlikely to result in a finding that a defect related to motor vehicle safety exists," NHTSA said in its post. "The stalls occurring in these vehicles only occur immediately after filling up the fuel tank and happen at low engine speeds.

The probe could have led to the recall of 1.86 million vehicles, including: the 2003-'07 Chrysler Town & Country, Chrysler Voyager, Dodge Caravan and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans.

NHTSA said that the failure rate is low even after "eight to 13 years" of a vehicle being in service.

There have been no reports of crashes or injuries yet as a result of the issue.

NHTSA started looking into the issue after receiving a July 2014 complaint from Brian Rosa of Union, N.J. who owns a 2007 Dodge Grand Caravan.

Rosa complained that his engine was stalling without warning after fueling up his minivan and asked the agency to look into the matter, according to USA Today.

"Stalling without warning represents an unreasonable risk to motor vehicle safety, and the agency should open a preliminary evaluation," he wrote in his complaint.

NHTSA reviewed his request and analyzed the other complaints along with technical information provided by Chrysler. They also tested a similar Chrysler minivan mentioned by Rosa to see if it had the same issue.

They decided not to open a formal investigation and closed its review on April 6.

"Given the need to allocate and prioritize NHTSA's limited resources to best accomplish the agency's safety mission, the petition is denied," the agency said.

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