Fiat Chrysler warns 5.3M owners: Don't use the cruise

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Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV said on Friday it is recalling 4.8 million US vehicles over a defect that could prevent drivers from deactivating cruise control and warned owners not to use the function until they get software upgrades.

FCA explains that the driver might be unable to cancel cruise control due to a "short-circuit" in a "specific electrical network" of the powertrain control module (PCM).

The Italian-American auto maker said no injuries or crashes were related to the large recall campaign.

A auto company is recalling almost 5 million vehicles because of a safety issue.

When a vehicle's cruise control is working properly, the driver can set a preferred speed until the brakes are tapped.

The flaw was initially discovered after Fiat Chrysler, which is also known as FCA, tested the vehicles' computer network. Included are 4.8 million vehicles in the US, another 490,000 in Canada and an undetermined number in Mexico and other countries.

The company's USA shares extended their decline in early trading, falling as much as 3.9 per cent, and were down 2.5 per cent as of 9:25 a.m.in NY. Thus stepping on the brake does not disengage the cruise control. "It was still running at an engine speed to support 70 miles per hour and fighting the brakes", the driver wrote. Drivers may also: "(1) shift the transmission to neutral; (2) forcefully apply the manual brake, and (3) place the vehicle in park once stopped".

"Should this error occur, drivers may be able to stop the vehicle by depressing the brake pedal", an NHTSA statement said. After the testing uncovered the trouble, Fiat Chrysler said it reviewed consumer complaints and found one that may be related.

Fiat Chrysler noted the recall repairs are free of charge and said it will begin alerting affected customers as early as next week.

Owners with questions can call their dealers or Fiat Chrysler at 866-220-6747. Get twice-daily updates on what the St. Louis business community is talking about.

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