Confusing Gear Shifter Recall Expanded To 13,000 Maserati Vehicles

Image courtesy of kevin dean

Days after the death of Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin was potentially linked to the confusing gear shifter in recalled Jeep vehicles that can appear to be in “Park” when they are not, Fiat Chrysler has announced an expansion of the recall to include some Maserati models.

Fiat Chrysler announced Thursday the recall of 13,092 model year 2014 Maserati Quattroporte and Ghibli sedans in the United States that feature the same transmissions and “Monostable electronic gear shift” included in the previous recall covering some Jeep Grand Cherokees, Dodge Chargers, and Chrysler 300 vehicles.

According to a notice [PDF] posted with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the vehicles include a gear shift level that “may be counter intuitive and may mislead drivers in believing their vehicle is in the “Park” position when actually the vehicles transmission is in a drive gear.”

As a result, when the driver exits the vehicle, while mistakenly believing it is in “Park,” the car still move, posing a serious injury risk.

As with the previously recalled Jeep, Dodge, and Chrysler vehicles, the Maserati models include a door ajar warning chime and warning cluster on the dash meant to alert drivers that the vehicle is not in “Park.”

However, investigators with NHTSA determined before the initial gear shift recall that this function does not protect drivers who “intentionally leave the engine running or those who do not realize that the engine is still running after an attempted shut-off.”

Maserati says, that of June 8, it is unaware of any crashes or injuries related to the issue.

The recall process of the Maserati vehicles began in February at the request of NHTSA, which asked the company to look into whether or not the shifter led people to believe their vehicle was in “Park” when it was in “Reverse,” leading to a roll away event.

Maserati says in a chronology report that it did not find any such complaints from customers or warranty claims related to the issue.

The carmaker says it will notify users of the recall on July 1. Maserati is currently investigating if a software reflash will fix the confusion issue.

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