California congressional representatives Anna Eshoo and Henry Waxman are appealing to Chrysler directly after the pair's request for a formal investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration was rejected by the agency, according to a report from The Detroit News.
Sensationalized in much of the media as the 'Jeep Death Wobble', Chrysler representatives and some other industry experts say the reported shimmy at highway speeds is endemic to the Wrangler's solid front axle design, and can be managed with proper tire care and maintenance as well as the installation of a steering dampener. Chrysler representative Michael Palese says some of the reported issues may be attributable to improperly-installed aftermarket equipment such as suspension lifts and oversized tires.
In a letter addressed to Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne, Waxman and Eshoo urged the company to undertake an outreach campaign to its dealers and customers to notify owners of the condition and the available methods for repairing or preventing it.
The NHTSA has identified 402 complaints out of 542,134 Wranglers built between 2005 and 2010 and two crashes. The agency said it will continue to monitor the situation and will take action if necessary.