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April 23, 2008

First, it was a 2003 recall for same-year Liberties with lower ball joint problems. After some of the replacements were apparently botched, Chrysler issued a new recall three years later that included 800,000 2002-2006 Liberties, addressing LBJ's that were showing "excessive wear and looseness." This time around, it's the upper ball joints that are the problem on over 300,000 '02-'03 Liberties. There've been a series of high-profile incidents in which the BJ's have separated, dumping the body onto one or both front tires and thus seriously ruining the driver's day. At least one ball joint has separated at 75 mph, and a handful have let go while the driver was either pulling out into traffic or making a left turn, leaving the stricken Liberty stranded in the path of oncoming traffic. To make a bad situation worse, Chrysler hasn't yet actually issued a recall on this particular problem, instead awaiting the results of the NHTSA's "engineering analysis" and attributing complaints to customers' "confusion about the difference between the [previously recalled] lower and upper ball joints." Sure, yet another recall of the 300,000 affected Liberties wouldn't be cheap, but can Chrysler afford to hem and haw while Liberty ball joints are coming apart at highway speeds?

LINK: CarDomain Car Blog: More Ball Joint Woes for Jeep Liberty
 
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