FCA to Repurchase Ram Pickups as Part of Record-Setting Penalty

Dodge-Tow-Vehilce II

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will pay $105 million in fines, the largest civil penalty imposed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over its lapses in the way the automaker recalls its vehicles. As part of the agreement, FCA will repurchase thousands of Ram pickup trucks because of defects with the steering systems in select 2008-2012 vehicles.

The Ram pickups at the heart of this buyback settlement are 2008-2012 Ram 4x4 1500, 2500, 3500, 4500 and 5500 vehicles. FCA says more than 60 percent of the vehicles within that category have already been fixed, and under the agreement, it will be required to offer current owners of those qualified pickups a fair price (spelled out as the total after depreciation is subtracted from the purchase price). Other vehicles affected in this agreement include several Jeep and Dodge SUVs.

According to the Associated Press, NHTSA's order is the result of an increasingly aggressive stance by regulators to ensure auto companies take all measures necessary to repair vehicle defects. The order comes on the heels of two recent recall notices for late-model Ram light- and heavy-duty pickups: one for the possibility of the computer systems being hacked and the other for problems with inadvertent deployment of the side curtain airbag and seat belt pretensioner.

Buyback programs like this are not unusual in the auto industry, but what makes this particular agreement standout is its size and scale. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx is clearly trying to hold automakers more accountable for production and design issues that could potentially be unsafe, while at the same time sending a message to other automakers that if they don't take swift and comprehensive actions, fines and penalties will be significant.

The previous NHTSA record for a fine against an automaker was $70 million against Honda for delays in reporting pertinent information in a timely fashion.

FCA's statement on the NHTSA order:

"FCA US LLC (FCA US) today announced it has entered into a consent order with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) which resolves the issues raised by NHTSA with respect to FCA US's execution of 23 recall campaigns in NHTSA's Special Order issued to FCA US on May 22, 2015 and further addressed at a NHTSA public hearing held on July 2, 2015. The consent order includes an admission by FCA US that in three specified campaigns it had failed to timely provide an effective remedy, and that it did not timely comply with various reporting requirements under the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966.

"Pursuant to the consent order, FCA US has agreed to make a $70 million cash payment to NHTSA and to spend $20 million on industry and consumer outreach activities and incentives to enhance certain recall and service campaign completion rates. An additional $15 million payment will be payable by FCA US if it fails to comply with certain terms of the consent order.

"FCA US has also agreed to undertake specific actions to improve its recall execution. The consent order will be supervised by an independent monitor and will remain in place for three years subject to NHTSA's right to extend for an additional year in the event of FCA US' noncompliance with the consent order.

"FCA US LLC acknowledges the admissions in its Consent Order with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. We also accept the resulting consequences with renewed resolve to improve our handling of recalls and re-establish the trust our customers place in us. We are intent on rebuilding our relationship with NHTSA and we embrace the role of public safety advocate. Accordingly, FCA US has agreed to address certain industry objectives, such as identifying best practices for recall execution and researching obstacles that discourage consumers from responding to recall notices."

The size and scope of this program is staggering, with some preliminary calculations headed into the billions of dollars if all the pickups (some are estimating as many as 300,000) are bought back. More to come.

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LOL! Both my dad and brother have pickups from those years. I wonder if they will unload their problem riddled Fiats and upgrade to a better brand... .

Too funny indeed. Could be worse. At least nobody uses Ram trucks to perform work, so industry won't be effected at all.

so what happens with these piles of junk after they are bought back from their owners?
I don't really care, not like I would buy a RAM new or used, just curious.




60% of them has been fixed. Not many would sell it back to RAM after depreciation.
RAM has rights to fix them and sell them again. It's easier to fix, than defective ecoboost.

What are the defects? Steering component defects seems very fixable to me IMO. Not sure why they have to buy them back.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ie-hlcw8VnU LOL!

@Johnny Doe Boy

I see your big block 427cu Z28 Camaro's got beat again on the Weekend at Lime Rock by the little 316cu GT350 Mustangs. LOL

They have to buy back the trucks and buy back even the 60% "fixed" trucks because there are either no parts, defective parts and/or bad repairs. They agreed to this because it was cheaper than litigating and losing.

Don't for a minute assume that FCA is happy about having to arbitrate thousands of buyback requests, pay dealers to repair, said vehicles, re-market them, and continue to be liable for defective parts/bad repairs on the resold buybacks. AND they have to publicly acknowledge that they did a terrible job at everything recall related for years.

There's no 'win' here for Chrysler. They're carrying a larger fine than GM, they're going to draw all sorts of scrutiny for a defect at Jeep that has killed dozens--yet slipped below the mainstream radar--and their entire recall operation is now basically run by the NHTSA.

I just don't understand how people at FCA let their relationship with the NHTSA deteriorate to this level. Did people who were fighting and refusing to comply w/NHTSA requests think that this would end well?

Did you have Sergio execs--or Sergio himself--refusing to authorize prudent measures suggested by career Chrysler employees who knew better?

@Rick Johnson
The Jeeps were certified by safety standards at the time they build them. Someone from NHTSA from that era should go to the jail. It's easy to make example punishment of foreign company in US than of their own. I don't get, why GM executives are still getting raise and not in the jail, but FCA needs to pay hefty fine for cars, which met all the safety standards when build, not to mention FCA ( ITALY) pays for mistakes made by Chrysler (US) executives.
At least they control this mess now and will take care of it. Could be much worse. Thank you FIAT for doing better job than US.

Chucky Cheese The one Camaro got spun out and the other a drive thru penalty both came back from that with a 5 five finish. Who has the Manufacturer points lead. Oh that's right Chevy Camaro does LOL!


This is the largest and most comprehensive punishment ever leveled against an automobile manufacturer.

The NHTSA will have unprecedented control over FCA's operations.

Trying to spin this as a "win-win" because it could've been worse is patently absurd.

@Rick Johnson
It's not a win win, but could be worse, because they could get 700 milion fine.
Those money will be used by some fat bureaucrat from NHTSA at his holidays.

Weren't the Ram herd praising FCA for addressing recalls in a timely manner. lol

Thank you RAM for stepping up and buying back the defective trucks. Ram is steeping up BIG TIME and protecting their customers UNLIKE Ford with their defective EcoBoosts! Kudos to RAM! Quality really is job 1 at RAM!

@Johnny Doe Boy

You forgot to mention the GT350's started from the rear of the field not at the very front row like the Big Block 427 Camaro Z28. The GT350's had to pass all that slow Chevy traffic to get to the front & win. LOL

PS: Just like FCA, I think Chevy should buy back all those 2014/15 Camaro's Z28 for being a slow POS at the track. LOL

@Hemi V8

How can Quality be Job 1 at Ram if they have to buy back all there POS trucks. LOL





Just like hemiv8 said, defective trucks. Somebody finally figured it out and said the right word. See all that quality has gotten them in deep do-do now.

I was riding in a late 90s ram and the steering box completely broke off the frame resulting in a total loss of steering. The wheels actually turned completely to one side. Would have been a disaster if we were traveling at any speed, but luckily we were just turning out of a parking lot. Now this happens. Apparently they still haven't figured out how to make a reliable steering system. I'm hoping my 09 ram is part of the buyback, but I wonder how much they will be required to pay? My truck is beat to crap and not worth much on the open market, which is the only reason I decided to keep it as a farm beater truck instead of sell it.

Ford is never going to buy defective trucks back. US government will protect them, because they don't have enough money to fix all those defective ecoboosts. You are stuck with them forever.


Ford Tops Auto Companies in Brand Survey.

Ford’s brand value was pegged at $20.3 billion, which put it in the 25th place overall.

Chevrolet, General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) largest division, with a value of $7.2 billion, which put it in 66th place.

GMC ranked 172nd in the Brand Finance study, with a value of $3.5 billion.

FCA was not ranked because it was value at less than $1 billion.


Funny the way the ram turds have to bring up Ford and this is a ram article. Rams getting its butt burnt and Ford has nothing to do with it so shut your pie holes.

@Chuck Taylor

FCA had more than $20 billion in cash and securities on March 31.


You people call yourselves adults?

Once again PickupTrucks.com shows they have the most classless comments section of all.

@Somar, I do agree there were some issues with ecoboosts but you make it sound like they all fall apart which is not the case at all. Just like how the ecodiesels leak exhaust fumes into the cab.. but hey.. ram is fixing that and its good, ford and gm is just garbage. /sarcasm

Somar Never mind Chucky Cheese kid I've seen walls and rocks smarter then that poor kid every day.

Yes Somar, listen to Johnny Doe Boy and purchase a recalled POS 1500 at your nearest Ram dealer ASAP. LOL

@Chuck Taylor
I will buy a new RAM 2500, but FCA could buy a Ford with that cash they have and be done with your ranting.

Why would I be mad ? FCA has enough cash to buy Ford, so they will take care of it.

@ Hemi V8 Quality... how can you jump up & down about quality on this latest news when Fiat/Ram/Chrysler, because of them people have died!
"The older Jeeps have fuel tanks located behind the rear axle, with little to shield them in a rear crash. They can rupture and spill gasoline, causing a fire. At least 75 people have died in crash-related fires, although Fiat Chrysler maintains they are as safe as comparable vehicles from the same era."

Crap, I was hoping I would qualify , but My 2010 RAM 1500 4x4 had this rear axle pinion checked and secured 1 and 1/2 year ago.
Well, at least I know, there is nothing wrong with my Laramie, but still, I would like to get some excuse to get a new truck.

The NHTSA is driving up the cost of buying a new truck for everybody.

This is not about RAM, it's about a bureaucracy in Washington that cannot let things be.

Americans have great cars and trucks to choose from. They are safer and more efficient that ever before. Washington doesn't know when to quit.

FCA should've taken lessons from Boeing on political lobbying against the DOT.

The DOT must have used up its money from the $1.2 billion Toyota settlement and is looking for new sources of funding.


GM, Toyota, Ford not interested in FCA merger

FCA constantly brings up the bottom in quality surveys. They own the bottom 4 spots in quality of vehicles. Good thing the UAW dropped there share of Chrysler like a bad habit and duped Fiat into buying them out. Chrysler, Ram, Jeep, and Dodge have been making complete garbage vehicles for decades. With each new redesign and generation of vehicles they bring to the market the worse reliable they get. Last good V8 they had were the magnums. Hemi's are the worst performing in there respective segment. There is a reason viper's don't use Hemi's cause Hemi's are garbage.

"Other Fiat Chrysler Automobiles brands did not fare much better. Jeep finished second-to-last in the survey, followed by Ram and Dodge in third and fourth position from the bottom. Chrysler fared the best of the FCA brands, with a 22nd-place finish (out of 28 total)"

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/consumer-reports-says-this-is-the-worst-car-around-2014-10#ixzz3h8a3UZuy

"I will buy a new RAM 2500, but FCA could buy a Ford with that cash they have and be done with your ranting."

If Chrysler, had enough money to buy Ford, why the Government bailout?

What you will see is a sales boost as people sell there Rams and Jeeps back to Fiat as they weren't planning it but will get new do there current deadly and unsafe vehicles..... GM and Ford will benefit from people bringing there Fiat money to there lots for a new Chevy or Ford. Fiat new sales numbers as people buy there products as well but they will be taking a loss on there purchase back there crap the sold a few years ago. Then those that decide to keep there unsafe Rams and Jeeps will see there value depreciate rapidly as people don't want the garbage and the fiat dealers used lots will have these bought back crap just piling up on top of each other and then there will be cut rate prices devaluing the people stupid enough to hang onto there vehicles.

Glad I held on to my magnum power Ram.... Far superior to the Hemi Ram's that are unsafe and full of recalls and problems..

This is worse then a recall! They actually have to buy back their JUNK if the owner does not want it anymore. When this is all done, they will be lucky to still be in business. Now I see why they wanted to merge with GM but GM did not need them. Now Fiat Chrysler will be lucky to find any auto company that would want to merge with them.

"I will buy a new RAM 2500, but FCA could buy a Ford with that cash they have and be done with your ranting."

If Chrysler, had enough money to buy Ford, why the Government bailout?

Posted by: Chuck Taylor | Jul 27, 2015 7:18:13 PM

Do you know the difference between FCA and Chrysler?
Let's see if you are smarter than first grade.
I'll give you a hint. FIA..

@Scott, Greg
You completely lost it. You don't even try to hide you are just trolololls

If they buy them back, what value are they giving owners of these vehicles for depreciation? Black book? Actual cash value?

What happens to these trucks after they buy them back? I don't think they would junk them so I'm guessing they would just "fix" them and put them out on the lot or wholesale them to other used car dealers.

What's the real reason the NHTSA is taking this rather severe action against FCA?

Is FCA blatantly refusing to fix the U-connect hacking and airbag pre tensioner issues at the dealer level? I think FCA did competently issue the needed recalls on these items (at least the lastest hacking issue) so they are addressing these issues. Are they not?

Is the NHTSA unfairly making a scapegoat out of FCA to get the other automakers to work on their own safety recalls and encourage them to offer prompt and effective responses when they issue them?

I don't know, something doesn't sound right with this and I think there's more to it than we are led to believe as consumers.

@the other mike

It's not really as bad as it could be, but of course it's going to be costly.
Here are some details and if customer is not happy with trade in value, he can still get his truck repaired.

to repurchase those vehicles at a price equal to the original purchase price less a reasonable allowance for depreciation plus ten percent. However, customers responding to the recall may continue to keep their vehicles and have them repaired in accordance with the original recall.

… repairs have been completed on well over 60% of the subject vehicles, leaving less than two hundred thousand eligible vehicles. … FCA intends that any vehicles repurchased will be remedied and resold.


Bad Fiat... Bad bad bad Fiat. No biscuit for you. This is what happens when you dont fix your bailout mobiles...

All smiles and popping corks at nhtsa offices. Who's next on their hit list? You fanboys really shouldn't be gloating

Huh, where were all of these Fiat fanboys defending Toyota when it was the target of a baseless shakedown by our benevolent government?

Oh that's right, piling on and spamming their stupid guts, glory, BS...

Karma sucks...

I am here. I didn't post even one bashing comment for Toyota recalls. I had 2 Toyotas BTW.

My comment was first in this article.


Man! Looks like 2015 is going to be a rough one for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. 2014 Was GM's bad year, Ford too also had a fair number of recalls and now it looks like watchdogs have quickly caught onto FCA. Automakers REALLY need to make quality their #1 priority and stop rushing yearly models so much.

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