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Chrysler Recalls: Beware of Vehicle Buyback Offers

11 comments

As reported today in the Chicago Tribune, Fiat Chrysler announced this week the details of the biggest vehicle buyback program in history, which was imposed on the company after a federal investigation into its track record of horrendous Chrysler recall completion rates lead to a $105 million civil penalty.  The buyback program involves three of the recent Chrysler recalls and includes cash plus potential incentives of $1,000 to $2,000 for certain vehicle owners who decide to buy a Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge or Fiat to replace their recalled vehicle.

Vehicles Covered by the Buyback Program

The buyback program covers Ram pickups and Dodge SUVs initially recalled in 2013 because they can lose power steering while in motion or have axle problems.  Details of the Ram pickup and Dodge SUV buyback program include:

Starting Oct. 1, customers can contact dealers to arrange for vehicle inspections. Dealers will then call a third-party administrator to complete the inspection and present a final offer to customers, who then have three options:

Opt for the recall repair and receive a $100 Visa Prepaid Card for unrestricted use.

Accept the repurchase offer.

Opt for the trade-in incentive, which is available through Jan. 4, 2016.

Ram pickups and Dodge SUVs that have already been repaired are not eligible for the repurchase program.

Fiat Chrysler also announced new incentives for owners of 1993-98 Jeep Grand Cherokee and 2002-07 Jeep Liberty SUVs that were recalled, but not yet repaired, as of July 24.

Those vehicle owners can either:

Receive a $100 Visa Prepaid Card for after their Jeep is repaired.

Trade in the vehicle and receive a $1,000 incentive toward the purchase of a new vehicle, or a $1,000 Visa Prepaid Card usable for parts or service at the FCA US dealership accepting the trade-in.

The automaker said it has started to mail notices to all of the eligible owners who qualify for the buyback program as well as those who qualify for the Jeep SUV recall and repair incentives.

Finally, Fiat Chrysler announced incentives for owners of 1993-98 Jeep Grand Cherokee and 2002-07 Jeep Liberty SUVs that were recalled, buut not yet repaired as of July 24, 2015.  Owner of those vehicles can either:

Receive a $100 Visa Prepaid Card after their Jeep is repaired; or

Trade in the vehicle and receive a $1,000 incentive toward the purchase of a new vehicle, or a $1,000 Visa Prepaid Card usable for parts or service at the FAC US dealership accepting the trade-in.

Warning to Owners Whose Vehicle Has Been Involved in a Catastrophic Crash

The defects leading to some of these Chrysler recalls can cause terrible automobile crashes, which result in catastrophic injuries.  For example some Jeeps were recalled because, due to an ignition switch/electrical system defect, they may experience an unintended change in ignition switch position resulting in loss of engine power, power steering, and braking.  Operating a vehicle without these features can obviously result in a bad crash.  Unfortunately, the defect may also disable the airbags, resulting in worse injuries to the occupants.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash involving Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, or Fiat vehicle and believe that loss of engine, steering, or brake power was a cause of the crash or that loss of airbags resulted in worse injuries, you need to preserve the vehicle for your lawsuit.  Do not agree to sell the vehicle to any insurance company, dealer, or to Chrysler until you have consulted with a competent product liability attorney.  Your attorney should consult with an expert capable of downloading the “black box” data concerning the airbags and engine power.

Phelan Petty is investigating Fiat Chrysler ignition switch cases.

 

11 Comments

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  1. Bozena says:
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    I purchased 2015 Chrysler Jeep Cherokee in May 2015, is there a recall on this model? should I take the car back to the dealer?

  2. Mike Schmidt says:
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    I have a 2009 ram 1500 eligible for the buyback, recall.gov says I am supposed to get the original purchase price plus 10% minus wear. I paid $37,000 for the truck and Chrysler offered 14,000 plus 10%. Chrysler says there only giving good condition market value based on today’s price. What was the ruling?

  3. Josh Jobe says:
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    I think there is going to be a problem with Chrysler’s Buyback program. I downloaded the consent order and it explicitly states on page 4, para 8: “”refund the purchase price, less a reasonable allowance for depreciation.” 49 U.S.C. § 30120(c)(1).” Furthermore on page 13 para. 35 it details FCA US’s Repurchase Program by stating: “The alternative remedy will be an offer to eligible owners to refund the purchase price paid by the first purchaser of the vehicle for purposes other than resale, less a reasonable allowance for depreciation, and not including the cost of modifications made to the vehicle after first retail sale (“the Purchase Price”). FCA US will additionally offer a premium of 10% above the Purchase Price to any owner of an unremedied vehicle electing this alternative remedy.”

    That is contrary to the offer presented through Chrysler’s Buyback site that is using KBB “Good Market Value” + 10%. The problem is that “reasonable allowance for depreciation” isn’t defined.

  4. B Gray says:
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    The buyback estimation is based on KBB TRADE IN COST NOT FAIR MARKET ! Don’t bother wasting your time contacting FCA they dance around your answer as shown in my “chat conversation below..

    Alicia: Hi, my name is Alicia. How may I help you?
    Alicia: Thank you for contacting the FCA US Recall Assistance Center Brooke!
    Brooke Gray: I have a question about the buy back repurchase estimate. It is estimating a trade in value on my truck when I thought FCA was offering buy back at Fair Market Value, not trade in
    Nicole: Hi, my name is Nicole. How may I help you?
    Alicia has left the chat.
    Brooke Gray: I have a question about the buy back repurchase estimate. It is estimating a trade in value on my truck when I thought FCA was offering buy back at Fair Market Value, not trade in
    Nicole: I can certainly understand wanting to know that information and I would love to assist you today Brooke. Just while I look in to this question for you today, do you mind verifying your address, city, state and zip for me please.
    Brooke Gray: 6460 Aldine Bender Rd Humble tx 77396
    Nicole: Thank you Brooke. So what is happening is in October is when you will be able to get your information on what exactly you would be entitled to for a buy back. The buy back option is still open, but there are a few other options you would be considered for as well.
    Brooke Gray: That doesn’t answer my question. How is the buyback appraised? Fair Market Value or trade in value as shown on estimate
    Nicole: That would depend on which option you decided to take. There are a total of 3 options that you will be given. Specifically with the buy back, Owner will receive Fair Market Value of their vehicle + 10%.
    Brooke Gray: If owner will receive fair market value then why is the estimated buyback shows amount as trade in value.
    Nicole: Trading the vehicle in is another option that we do have.
    Brooke Gray: What are details of trade in
    Nicole: Owners who choose this option can trade in their vehicle and receive an additional trade-in incentive over the fair market value of their vehicle – the combined total of which will be credited towards the purchase or lease of a new vehicle. The additional trade-in incentive above fair market value is good for $2,000 towards the purchase or lease of a new RAM or $1,000 towards the purchase or lease of a new Dodge/Jeep/Chrysler or Fiat vehicle.
    Brooke Gray: So if i trade in it will be up to the dealer on how much they would offer for my truck correct?
    Nicole: The dealership would be able to go over all your options a little more in detail. But yes, they would be the ones to talk to if you were thinking of taking that option.
    Brooke Gray: So the only thing FCA is offering is 2K incentive ?
    Nicole: There are 3 options. The first is to have the recall repaired for an incentive. The second is Have vehicle repurchased, and the third is Trade the vehicle in on the purchase or lease of a new FCA US Vehicle. Each option has its own perks, but it really does depend on what is best for you and your lifestyle.
    Brooke Gray: I’m not getting clear answers which only makes me feel as if you don’t even know details yet. I’m confused as to why the estimated repurchase amount shows me a trade in cost when I was told FCA will repurchase at fair market value. The option of trading in for a RAM product makes no sense to do so , 2K incentive is not worth it to me. If I wanted to trade truck in I would do it without FCA’s help
    Nicole: You will not know exactly what is going to be offered for your vehicle until our dealerships have had a chance to review the vehicle. So if you’re looking at the exact repurchase value, that will not be known until October when our dealerships start booking appointments to look over the vehicle.
    Brooke Gray: Trade in doesn’t make sense either. What if dealership decides not to offer you correct trade in value for truck then the 2k incentive doesn’t really help
    Nicole: There would be a third party inspector that would assist as well.
    Brooke Gray: 3rd party inspector if I decided to trade truck in?
    Nicole: If you wanted to trade your truck in, I believe that would be just between you and the dealership. The 3rd party inspector would be if you wanted the buy back option.
    Brooke Gray: That’s what I was asking, Now I understand. These offers are really horrible. FCA is not estimating buy back at Fair Market Value they are estimating repurchase amount as a trade in. Sorry but these are not fair offers. 2K incentive if I decide to trade truck in for another Ram has no appeal. Driving this truck this entire time without even knowing of this recall because I was never sent a notice. Now this is what FCA has offered is very sad and I just lost all interest in any future Ram purchase.
    Brooke Gray: We were told FCA was to offer fair market value not what website now show **After October 1st, FCA U.S. will repurchase your vehicle for an amount equal to the current Kelley Blue Book® Trade-In Value plus 10%** .
    Nicole: I am very sorry that you feel that way Brooke. I completely understand where you’re coming from, and I will certainly document this so Chrysler can review this concern. But if you wanted to explore all of your options, you can always wait until the dealership has a chance to give you the actual amount that would be offered for your vehicle, and then if you do not like that amount, you could explore the trade in value or the repair incentive.
    Nicole: Are you still here Brooke.
    Nicole: Are you still here Brooke?

  5. Anonymous says:
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    FCA isn’t following the Consent Order. Their ‘buyback’ offer is being based on KBB trade in value and not the court ordered:

    “The alternative remedy will be an offer to eligible owners to refund the purchase price paid by the first purchaser of the vehicle for purposes other than resale, less a reasonable allowance for depreciation, and not including the cost of modifications made to the vehicle after first retail sale (“the Purchase Price”). FCA US will additionally offer a premium of 10% above the Purchase Price to any owner of an unremedied vehicle electing this alternative remedy.”

    It’s obvious that the courts intentions were to have FCA pay fair market value, not fair trade in value.

    I hope they get hit with a class action lawsuit.

  6. Ann says:
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    It’s so funny how our world has gotten such a freebie, entitled mentality. Are you people so dumb to think you would get a new price for a used and depreciated vehicle? I would think your common sense would set in and think wow, I can’t get my insurance company to replace my totaled vehicle as new. You get fair market value people. This is why our country is so broke. Stop with the welfare mentality.

  7. B says:
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    ITS NOTHING TO DO WITH FREEBIES ! WHY WOULD I ACCEPT FCA TO PURCHASE MY VEHICLE AT TRADE IN VALUE WHEN I CAN TRADE IN WITHOUT FCA’S ASSISTANCE. I’VE OWNED THIS DODGE AND FCA NEVER SENT ME A RECALL LETTER AND I WAS UNAWARE! MY DRIVE SHAFT CAN FALL OUT AT ANY TIME. MY CHILD IS BEING PUT AT RISK AND I HAD A FRIEND WHO DIED FROM THIS RECALL IN WHICH AT THE TIME WAS NOT AWARE OF THE ISSUE BECAUSE HE WAS NOT INFORMED. SO BEFORE YOU THROW YOUR OPINION YOU MIGHT WANT TO LOOK INTO FACTS AND THE LIVES THAT WERE AFFECTED!

  8. B says:
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    AND FYI NO ONE CLAIMED ON THESE COMMENTS THAT THEY EXPECTED A REFUND OF THE ORIGINAL PRICE! WHAT I EXPECT IS FCA TO ABIDE BY THE CONSENT ORDER! I WASN’T GOING TO ACCEPT BUYBACK I WAS GOING TO HAVE RECALL REPAIRED BUT EVERY DEALERSHIP I CONTACTED DIDN’T EVEN HAVE THE PARTS IN STOCK. I DON’T NEED A HANDOUT OR A FREEBIE! FCA FAILED TO FOLLOW PROTOCOL IN ISSUING RECALL CORRECTLY AND PUT MANY LIVES AT RISK AND IT HAS TAKEN LIVES!! OUR COUNTRY ISN’T BROKE BECAUSE OF THIS YOU IDIOT, THEY JUST COLLECTED 85 MILLION DOLLARS FROM FCA!

  9. md says:
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    I agree with b. I have a document that clearly says “fair market value” not trade in. Fair market is what dealer would sell to prospective buyers for, so that’s what fca should purchase it for since they are the buyers. I’m not happy with this “good” designation either for use who kept our vehicals very good condition.

  10. Marc says:
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    I had the recall done on the fly (N49), I did not know that there was a buy back. I went to a dealer they told me that, “Seeing as you had it fixed, you are not eligible for the buy back program” I did the mopar.com bs and they told me well what you have to do is apply for the $100.00 Visa card. I do not want a truck they said “it’s fixed” now another recall on the truck again, I’m writing to http://www.safercar.gov and complain. What BS

  11. Wendy carson says:
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    I have a 97 Jeep Grand Cherokee, I’m disabled, my Jeep had 2 be taken off road 2013, because my gauges, oil,batt,temp, all wd drop to 0 ,my headlights wd go out and back on,when stopped ,it wd cut off I am disabled ,so is Jeep,fcc said I need to get it to dealership,I can’t drive it,Company will not send wrecker,I need ur help,please,ph.252-216-8984 or 252-473-1174