Jeep has no reports of this problem happening in the real world. The company discovered the issue during internal testing.
Jeep will recall 182,308 examples of the 2016 and 2017 Wrangler in the United States for an issue with the front impact sensor. The problem specifically affects examples with build dates from June 16, 2015, to August 14, 2016.
The automaker finds that certain crashes can cause the headlamp to rotate, and this results in the front impact sensor disconnecting before it can send a signal to the Occupant Restraint Controller. If this occurs, the frontal airbags and seatbelt pretentioners would not work, which could cause injuries to occupants.
Jeep is still working out how to fix the problem and does not yet know when the remedy might be ready. The company will still tell owners about the problem by November 25 and will notify them again for scheduling the repair.
Jeep discovered the problem on July 8, 2016, when it tested the driver and passenger airbags from a 2017 Wrangler on an example from the 2016 model year. They didn’t deploy, and the pretensioners didn’t activate. The engineering team researched the problem and discovered changes to the routing of the wiring during the 2016 Wrangler’s assembly. Experiments demonstrated the same problem didn’t happen on examples from 2015MY. Research showed no known field reports or customer complaints of this problem occurring in the real world.
The 2017 Wrangler is the final year for the current generation because a new one arrives for the 2018 model year. A recent leak suggests that it keeps the iconic look but modernizes the shape by incorporating elements like LED running lights into the fenders. The next-gen Wrangler reportedly also keeps weight down by using aluminum for some parts of the body. Customers would eventually be able to choose among an updated V6, turbocharged four-cylinder, or a diesel engine under the hood. In the future, a hybrid is even possible. We also know that Jeep is using the new platform for a pickup.