After receiving multiple reports of people getting injured due to vehicles rolling way while still parked, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it will be reviewing some Land Rovers and Jaguar XF sedans involved in these incidents.
The federal safety regulator's Office of Defect Investigation has received a total of seven consumer complaints of rollaway tendencies for the Land Rover Evoque 2012-2014 and the Jaguar XF 2013.
In a report found on the agency's website, it estimates that there could be about 39,000 vehicles affected in the investigation.
What Happens During a Vehicle Rollaway
A preliminary investigation was opened on Dec. 16, the agency said. Four of the injuries reported happened while the driver's door was open, while another incident involved a person that got pinned against a garage wall.
According to the car owners, their vehicles' transmissions had shifted to "park," and that none of the drivers involved had their parking brakes engaged when the accidents happened.
All of the owners reported that their vehicles started moving after the drivers put the vehicles into "park," left the engines turned on then exited the vehicles.
A 2013 Land Rover Evoque owner said they shifted to "park" while the engine was on and moved out of the car to open a garage door when the Evoque started moving. The SUV hit the garage door and kept moving until it crashed against a wall. Another 2012 Land Rover Evoque had a similar experience, except the Evoque crashed into another vehicle.
Other Car Models Being Probed For Rollaway Tendencies
Interestingly enough, both the Land Rovers and Jaguar XF sedan models use the same rotary transmission shifters that are also being used in the Ram 1500 pickup and Dodge Durango SUV. These two car models are also under the scrutiny of the NHTSA after it received more than three dozens of similar consumer complaints of vehicle rollaways.
NHTSA Preliminary Investigation
In a preliminary evaluation, the NHTSA will determine if the vehicles will need to be recalled or not. Both the NHTSA and the car manufacturer involved will investigate the customer complaints in order to establish the reasons why the vehicles are rolling away despite their parked state. If they see no safety defects, the preliminary investigation will be closed without any further action.
If the investigation escalates to the Engineering Analysis phase, the NHTSA will recreate the same situation in a controlled environment. Depending on the results of these tests, the NHTSA may request either a full or partial recall of these vehicles.