Washington :Automaker Fiat Chrysler is about to be hit with a record USD 105 million fine for lapses in recalls of its vehicles, the Wall Street Journal reported today.
US regulators are expected to announce the fine on Monday under a settlement that will require the company to accept an independent audit of its recall process for an extended period, the newspaper said, citing people familiar with the matter.
The newspaper’s sources said the company will also buy back some defective vehicles.
It amounted to another setback for the Italian-American auto company which on Friday announced recalls of 1.4 million vehicles in the United States after hackers demonstrated they could remotely control a Jeep Cherokee while it was in operation.
The record fine was to punish legal violations in recalls of 11 million vehicles, including older Jeep models with rear gas tanks linked to numerous fatal fires, the Journal said.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration accuses the automaker of obstructing the work of regulators, of not alerting car owners to problems in a timely manner, and of having proceeded to carry out insufficient repairs, the report said.
The fine is far greater than those imposed on General Motors (USD 35 million) for delayed recalls and on Japan’s Honda (USD 70 million) for hiding safety problems in some of its vehicles.