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Fiat will be recalling some 5,600 of its all-electric 500e hatchbacks, all of which hail from model years 2013, 2014 and 2015. Weirdly, this recall is being caused by a March 2015 software update.

According to The Detroit News, last month's update addressed the software in the Electric Vehicle Control Unit and Battery Pack Control Module "to implement improvements in charging system robustness, diagnostic capability and range estimation over life. In addition to the primary reasons for the software update, Limp Home Mode was included as part of battery pack software continuous improvement," FCA explained. "It was because of this software update that the software incompatibility occurred where the EVCU did not recognize the Limp Home Mode."

Should your car go into limp mode, "incompatible software between Electric Vehicle Control Unit (EVCU) and Battery Pack Control Module (BPCM) may cause the electric propulsion system to fully shut down," according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration bulletin.

So yes, the March software update can cause your EV to stall. Vehicles built between March 27, 2012 and November 1, 2014, which sounds like basically all 500es, are affected by the recall. Chrysler will begin notifying owners with recall operations to begin in the middle of next month. Scroll down for the official NHTSA bulletin.

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Show full PR text
Report Receipt Date: MAR 27, 2015
NHTSA Campaign Number: 15V179000
Component(s): ELECTRICAL SYSTEM
Manufacturer: Chrysler (FCA US LLC)
SUMMARY:
Chrysler (FCA US LLC) is recalling certain model year 2013-2015 Fiat 500 EV vehicles manufactured March 27, 2012, to November 1, 2014. If the vehicle goes in to limp home mode, incompatible software between Electric Vehicle Control Unit (EVCU) and Battery Pack Control Module (BPCM) may cause the electric propulsion system to fully shut down.
CONSEQUENCE:
An electric propulsion system shut down will cause a stall-like condition, increasing the risk of a crash.
REMEDY:
Chrysler will notify owners, and dealers will update the vehicle software to ensure compatability between components, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin May 15, 2015. Owners may contact Chrysler customer service at 1-800-853-1403. Chrysler's number for this recall is R15.
NOTES:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.


RECALL HELP

Get recall details from the NHTSA and find out what to do if your car been recalled.

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