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Electronic Throttle Control Failure

40417 Views 7 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  HEMEEE
In case anyone else is searching for similar info, here is my story:

Picked up our Nitro on Wednesday (3 days ago). This morning, the Electronic Throttle Control warning light on our SXT (auto trans) comes on. I hope it's a glitch, turn vehicle off, wait, turned it back on. No light. Life is good, right? I got a block away and the fuel injection started dying 95% to 100%. The Owners Manual says only safe option is to have it towed. Am waiting for tow-truck as I type this. Told the dealer's Sales Mgr he better secure my trade back because this failure would have killed somebody if it happened while turning left across oncoming highway traffic. Man, do I feel stupid. My neighbors will get a real charge out of seeing this new SUV being towed from our driveway.
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So, it turned out to be the "APPS" sensor which they tell me communicates the gas foot pedal's location to the throttle system which digitally replaces what used to be accomplished with a simple throttle cable. Dealer tells me virtually all Dodge/Chrysler products use this technology now, even if different actual part SKU's are involved. There was a 2-week "national back order" for the part we needed, so the dealer scavenged the sensor from the showroom model. They say that Liberty's and Ram 1500's (my other vehicle, yay) have had these problems. The dealer had provided us with a new Jeep Liberty as a loaner, too. Although there was some hesitation and uncertainty on their part, overall, the dealer did everything they could to assist us. Reminding them that we have not yet completed our Daimler-Chrysler Dealership Questionnaire certainly helped! Now, if we could just get over the fear that the gas will suddenly fail sometime when we're about to turn left across oncoming traffic...
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NO FRICKIN' WAY!!!! Due to a "2-week national back-order on the required part," the dealership had to replace the failed sensor which made our 3-day old Nitro stall (----nice) with a part scavenged out of another brand new Nitro on their lot.

They did this on Oct. 24 (last Tuesday).

Today, only eight days later, the replacement part has also failed!! They had to again tow the Nitro back to the dealership. I'm doing my best to invoke local "anti-lemon" laws.

Hoping for the best but we can no longer keep this vehicle.

Yikes, friggin' DEATH-TRAP. We bought this 4x4 to increase the safety and reliability for my wife and daughter who have to commute into rural areas each day (Canadian winters can be the stuff of legend). I just cringe when I imagine this thing dying just as they have to turn left across oncoming highway traffic!
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Well, we finally gave up and the Dealer agreed this Nitro was a lost cause.
They will retain it as a Demo for awhile to see if any of the repairs result in reliable resolutions.

Meanwhile, we have "traded up" (so to speak) for a 2006 Jeep Commander, which would have been our first choice but was a little too pricey at some $9K above the 2007 Nitro.

With 0% financing at 60 and even 72 months, the total cost of ownership for the 2006 Commander was now only about $1K over the cost for the 2007 Nitro. Realizing that Commanders have had their problems as well, we're simply hoping for the best.

To all you Nitro owners: good luck and safe driving. It is definitely a fine-looking, fun-to-drive SUV and we would have enjoyed ours if it had been reasonably dependable.

Now, I'm off to the Jeep Commander Forum! :)
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