Jeep has announced a recall for more than 130,000 Cherokees produced for the 2014-2016 model years to address a potential fire risk posed by the power lift gate control module. During this production period, the module assembly was located such that it was vulnerable to water intrusion. If this happens, water inside the module can cause it to short-circuit, leading to a fire.
“An electrical short in the power lift gate module may lead to a vehicle fire with the ignition on or off,” Jeep’s defect report to NHTSA said. Jeep’s notice said that customers may notice that their liftgates no longer operate before the issue escalates to a fire, but there’s no guarantee of any warning.
Stellantis first opened its investigation into the issue last January after an uptick in cargo compartment fires. The company’s report said that it has identified 50 incidents (along with 23 warranty claims and 21 field reports) related to the problem, however no known accidents or injuries have been associated with any of them so far.
Jeep does not yet have a remedy in place for the issue, but it will likely require inspection and replacement or re-sealing of the power lift gate control module. Owners should be notified of the issue starting in late June or early July.