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Chrysler announces recall of up to 800,000 Jeep SUVs

Chrysler announces recall of up to 800,000 Jeep SUVs
Chrysler Group will recall up to 800,000 Jeep SUVs, including the 2005 Grand Cherokee seen here, for potentially defective ignition switches. (Chrysler Group)

Chrysler Group said it would recall potentially hundreds of thousands of its Jeep SUVs to fix a faulty ignition switch.

Chrysler hasn't determined the exact number of vehicles affected, but said Tuesday that up to 792,300 vehicles could be affected globally, with 649,900 from the U.S.

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The recall affects certain Jeep Commanders from 2006 and 2007 and Jeep Grand Cherokees from 2005 to '07. The vehicles have an ignition switch that can be inadvertently knocked out of the "On" position.

If this happens, often during contact with the driver's knee, the engine can stall, and power safety systems including the brakes, steering and air bags may not work, Chrysler said.

The automaker said it is aware of one accident and no injuries or deaths related to this defect.

Chrysler will identify the specific vehicles included in this recall, and will notify owners by mid-September. In the meantime, the company recommends drivers remove all other keys off their key chain, and ensure there is clearance between their knees and key when it's in the ignition.

Chrysler's ignition-switch issues are similar to those in 2.6-million vehicles recalled by GM this year. That issue has been linked to at least 13 deaths, and spurred investigations by the Department of Justice and several congressional committees into why its recalls were delayed by as much as a decade.

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