Pacifica Recall: Who’s Affected

Hang-tight curve-peeling soccer moms and dads. Before you go on your next joy ride, make sure your vehicle is not part of the Fiat Chrysler recall. Fiat Chrysler engineers discovered a problem with Chrysler Pacifica minivans. Learn:
  • what is wrong with Pacificas and if your vehicle is affected
  • why the problem exists
  • what scenario you should avoid
  • Chrysler’s plan to fix the problem
  • what you can do to keep your family safe

What’s Wrong With the 2017 and 2018 Chrysler Pacifica

2017 and 2018 Chrysler Pacifica - Auto USA

image via Flickr bymariordo59

The Fiat safety engineers discovered a safety issue with the 2017 and 2018 Chrysler Pacific with the optional 8-passenger seating. There are situations in which the middle seat belt buckle can hit the left buckle and unlatch it. Thankfully, it does not seem as though anyone has reported any accidents as a result of this safety issue. It looks as though fiat safety engineers are earning their keep!

What Causes The Problem to Occur

The problem with the middle seat is the seat belt’s length. You need three components to recreate this problem: speed and a middle-row left and center seat passenger. There is a risk that the person in the middle seat’s seatbelt can unlatch the left person’s seatbelt. How? Funny you should ask. Continue reading.

How the Problem Occurs

You are running late and it is your turn to drop off Johnny and his friends to soccer practice. Your car is at capacity with half the soccer team.  You are driving a little faster than normal and swerve to avoid something in the road. It’s not enough to endanger the children, but it is just enough to sway Johnny, who is in the middle seat, to un-belt is friend sitting to his left. Needless to say, it does not take much for an ordinary day to turn into a day you would rather forget.

What Chrysler Fiat is Doing About the Problem

Starting October 20th, Chrysler Fiat will begin a recall to fix the problem. You will be able to get your middle seat belt fixed. Your dealership will replace the middle seat belt buckle with a shorter one so you can speed (just a little) in peace.

How to Avoid the Issue Until Your Seatbelt is Replaced

You can either use this recall to get you off soccer drop off (and pickup) duty or you can change your passenger count. Make sure that middle row left and middle seats are not used at the same time. In order to create the safety issue, you need for those two seats to be occupied (and a lead-foot parent). Perhaps the reason there have been no reported injuries is that soccer moms and dads wait to joyride AFTER the kids are not in the vehicle. Still, it is better to be safe rather than live in regret. Until your minivan is repaired:
  • Slow down.
  • Drive with one less passenger than your maximum capacity.
  • Do not let anyone occupy the middle row left and center seats at the same time.