WASHINGTON -- Fiat Chrysler dealers stand to lose incentive dollars from the automaker if they sell used cars with open, unrepaired recalls under a new policy ordered by U.S. regulators.
The policy is outlined in the 36-page consent agreement between Fiat Chrysler and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, imposed July 24 for violations of U.S. auto safety laws tied to 23 FCA recalls.
According to the agreement, FCA US must "develop and implement a process to deter dealer sales of unremedied vehicles subject to a recall." That will include training to reinforce FCA's existing policy against selling cars with open recalls. It also calls for "imposing a financial penalty ... and/or prohibiting any dealer from receiving any incentive from FCA US, if the dealer sells an unremedied recalled vehicle regardless of whether new or used."
It's illegal to sell new cars with open recalls, but no such law exists for used cars.
Dealer groups have opposed recent legislation introduced to ban the sale of used cars with unrepaired recalls. The National Automobile Dealers Association said one such bill recently proposed by U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., would diminish the value of millions of used cars and ground vehicles recalled for minor compliance issues such as a typo in an owner's manual.
Details of how the policy will work are still unclear. A Fiat Chrysler spokesman said the automaker was still developing the policy in the days after the consent order with NHTSA was announced last week and said dealers would be briefed when it was finalized. c