Chrysler Group refused Tuesday to cooperate with a call by US transportation safety officials to recall 2.7 million Jeep sport utility vehicles.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration proposed that Chrysler voluntarily recall the Jeep Grand Cherokee in the 1993-2004 models, and the Jeep Liberty in the 2002-2007 models.
The bureau has been investigating reports of fires after rear-impact crashes over the past two years.
Chrysler said the initial conclusions were based on "incomplete analysis" of the data and insisted the vehicles were safe. They meet and exceed "all applicable requirements" for fuel-system integrity, the company said.
It said its own analysis showed the incidents "occur less than once for every million years of vehicle operation" - a rate comparable for cars produced during the time period.
"The safety of drivers and passengers has long been the first priority for Chrysler brands and that commitment remains steadfast," said Sergio Marchionne, chairman and chief executive officer of Chrysler Group LLC.
Marchionne is also chief of Fiat, which took over Chrysler during the 2009 US government bailout of the country's third largest car producer. He said the company would continue to work with officials "to provide information confirming the safety of these vehicles."
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