NADA is teaming up with the National Safety Council and Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles to help make "check to protect" as ubiquitous as "Click it or ticket."
Wes Lutz, incoming NADA chairman, announced Friday that he will be the first franchised new-car dealer to advertise the "check to protect" link on his dealership's website to encourage customers to look for outstanding recalls on their vehicles. The campaign was launched last year to ensure more customers get their vehicles fixed.
Roughly 53 million cars — one out of every four — on the road today have outstanding recalls, the National Safety Council said. Most car buyers either aren't aware of problems on their vehicles or don't have time to get their cars fixed, studies show.
In the nine months since the campaign launched, more than 112,000 people have clicked through and checked their VIN, FCA said.
"We want checking for recalls to become as natural for drivers as checking their oil or tire pressure," Kristen Kreibich, safety advocate, FCA US Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance, said.
Lutz encouraged other dealers to advertise the checktoprotect.org link on their own dealership sites.
"This is an incredibly important initiative," he said. "As the incoming NADA chairman, I wanted to lead by example. Check to protect needs to be embraced by the entire industry."
The National Safety Council in the 1990s launched the "click it or ticket" campaign to help raise seat belt usage. A NSC official said that seat belt usage rose from 61 percent when the campaign was launched to 84 percent 10 years later.
They're hoping the same thing happens with recall completion rates, which hover around 75 percent.
"We have the messaging and the dealers have the audience," Alex Epstein, senior director, digital strategy and content at the National Safety Council, said. "Together we can change that mindset at let the public know that recalls are important. If we can prevent one recall-related fatality, we know the effort is worth it."