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Consumer groups seek liability warning on used Chrysler vehicles

Posted Wednesday, Jul 8, 2009, 11:09 am in Employee News

The Chrysler Group would have to affix stickers on its used cars to warn customers of liability risks, under federal rule changes requested by consumer groups, the Automotive News reported.

The Federal Trade Commission is reviewing the groups’ petition and may propose changes in its 1984 Used Car Rule, said Mitchell Katz, a spokesman for the independent consumer-protection agency told the trade paper. The request stems from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court’s determination that Chrysler is not liable to injured victims for claims on defective vehicles made before May 30 because most of the company’s assets were sold to a new company run by Fiat on that date, the Automotive News said.

Chrysler opposes the petition by five consumer groups including the Center for Auto Safety, a Washington-based nonprofit founded in 1970 by Ralph Nader and the Consumers Union.

“In Chrysler’s bankruptcy, the ability to form a new company free from the product liability burden of the old company was essential to the new company’s survival,” Chrysler spokesman Michael Palese said in an e-mail to the paper. “This is not an issue involving an identified potential safety issue with these vehicles, nor do petitioners claim to have uncovered a systemic defect that requires disclosure.” (Automotive News)
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