For Wranglers with 3.6-liter V-6 engines, Chrysler says a power steering fluid line can wear a hole in the transmission oil cooler line. The SUVs can leak fluid, damaging automatic transmissions. Dealers will inspect the lines for free and replace them or install a protective sleeve. The recall begins in July.
No crashes or injuries have been reported in either case, Chrysler spokesman Eric Mayne said Thursday.
The Compass and Patriot recall includes 254,400 vehicles in the U.S., 45,400 in Canada and another 109,400 outside North America, according to Chrysler.
The Wrangler recall includes 181,000 vehicles in the U.S. as well as 18,400 in Canada, 3,300 in Mexico and another 18,400 outside North America.
On Tuesday, Chrysler refused a request from NHTSA to recall 2.7 million older Jeep Grand Cherokee and Liberty SUVs, saying the vehicles are safe and met federal safety standards when they were built. The government, however, says the 1993-2004 Grand Cherokees and 2002-2007 Liberty models have fuel tanks that can leak and catch fire in rear-end collisions. The tanks are mounted behind the rear axle, which NHTSA says is a design flaw.
Refusing a recall is rare for an automaker, but Chrysler maintains that NHTSA's conclusions are based on flawed data. The company says it's still working with NHTSA to resolve the issue, but the matter could wind up in court.
The company previously refused a NHTSA request in 1996, when the agency asked it to recall 91,000 Dodge Stratus and Chrysler Cirrus cars for an alleged seat belt defect. NHTSA sued the company and won in federal court. But in 1998, an appeals court reversed the decision, saying NHTSA had unfairly held Chrysler to a new standard.
Chrysler says there are no safety defects with the older Jeeps. But Mayne said defects were identified on the newer Jeeps and the company responded accordingly.
Where to call
Concerned customers in either recall can call Chrysler at 800-853-1403.