Chrysler recalls 56,000 2011 Ram 1500 for axle risk
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, select 2011 Ram 1500 trucks built between September 2009 and December 2010 have rear axle bearings that are wearing out much more quickly than they should be. This problem begins with a whining or howling noise from the rear end followed by grinding and once you have reached that point, it is possible for the bearing to fail altogether. Typically, when the bearing completely fails, it is possible that the rear wheel could lock up, making it very difficult to control the direction of the vehicle and greatly increasing the likelihood of a crash.
Interestingly, the NHTSA statement claims that in the worst case scenario, the failing bearing could cause the engine to stall but in either case this increases the chances of a crash and that is just what the NHTSA looks for when ordering recalls. General Motors announced last week that they are recalling just shy of 1,300 Cadillac, GMC and Chevrolet light duty trucks over a similar rear axle lock-up condition, although the GM recall was caused by a faulty cross pin where this Ram recall suggests an issue with the rear axle bearings used.
The NHTSA has not stated what factors are involved with the group of trucks included in this recall but with the Ram brand selling almost 177,000 trucks through November 2010 (this number includes all Rams, from 1500-5500), 56,611 is a pretty substantial portion of 2011 trucks to be recalled. The good news is that there have been no reports of accidents, injuries or deaths stemming from this problem.
This recall is set to officially begin next month and owners will be invited to return to their neighborhood Chrysler Group dealership where the rear axle bearings will be inspected and if needed, they will be replaced free of charge.
Other Chrysler News:
The 2011 Dodge Journey to be sold by Fiat in Europe
Dodge preparing huge ad plan including Super Bowl commercial in 2011
Chrysler recalling 76,000 diesel Ram trucks over braking concern