US regulators have imposed a record fine of $105m (£67.6m) on Fiat Chrysler over recall failures, in a crack-down on manufacturer defects.
The automaker will also offer to buy back as many as 1.5 million vehicles in an agreement with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, as well as agreeing to allow an independent monitor to audit the company’s recall performance for three years.
The huge fine eclipses the previous record of $70 million imposed against Honda Motor Co in January for failing to report death, injury and other claims.
Mark Rosekind, administrator of the NHTSA, said in a statement: “Fiat Chrysler’s pattern of poor performance put millions of its customers and the driving public at risk.This action will provide relief to owners of defective vehicles, will help improve recall performance throughout the auto industry, and gives Fiat Chrysler the opportunity to embrace a proactive safety culture.”
The breakdown of the fine includes a $70 million cash payment, an agreement that Fiat Chrysler will spend $20 million improving its recall process and an additional $15 million payable if the automaker is found to have committed any further violations.