Some Jeep Patriots appear to be experiencing minor technical difficulties.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has received a dozen reports of the Patriots stalling without warning. Their Office of Defects Investigation says that 10 of the 12 incidents occurred when the cars were going highway speed, or 65 mph or above.
In all cases, the cars would not restart immediately, and in 8 instances, they would not restart at all and had to be towed.
The NHTSA also reports that the instances appear to be becoming more frequent, as all but three of the reports have come in within the last 6 months. Obviously, this creates a major safety concern, and both Chrysler and the NHTSA are looking into the issues. The NHTSA is performing what they call a preliminary investigation, which, if the issue proves to be widespread, could result in a recall of all 2011 or 2012 Patriots.
The investigation involves over 100,000 cars. Chrysler is surprised at the malfunction, as the Patriot is, in general, quite a safe car. In fact, the car won the Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for protecting people during crashes. They advise anyone concerned about their car to talk to their dealer.
If you have a Patriot, you may want to get it checked so your morning commute doesn’t stall out.