DaimlerChrysler AG’sGroup says it is lowering the suspension of its Jeep Liberty SUV, a move that comes on the heels of safety and stability concerns brought up by two auto magazines.
U.S. publication AutoWeek and German magazine Auto Bildd both questioned the vehicle’s stability in tests. AutoWeek rolled the Liberty during a severe driving test at 40 mph (64 km/h). Auto Bild said the Liberty’s handing was "uncertain" and the vehicle needed to be recalled.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Admin. has given the Liberty two out of a possible five stars for rollover propensity, meaning the vehicle has a 30%-40% chance of rolling over in a single vehicle accident.
says both tests were too severe and the Liberty is safe. However, in early April, Chrysler began building models with a front some 0.9 ins. (22 mm) lower and a rear 0.7 ins. (19 mm) lower. Chrysler says the reason for the change was not the two news reports, but the fact Liberty owners were not taking the vehicle off road as much as the auto maker had anticipated.
To date, Chrysler has sold 34,880 Liberty SUVs this year in North America.