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NHTSA Opens Probe of 590,000 Chrysler Sedans

DETROIT, March 11, 2003; Reuters reported that U.S. auto safety regulators have opened a defect investigation into 589,596 Chrysler sedans, after five complaints of throttles sticking open.

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said on Tuesday the investigation opened late last month covered Dodge Intrepid, Chrysler 300M, LHS and Concorde sedans built by DaimlerChrysler AG from model year 1999 to 2000.

NHTSA said two of the complaints involved throttles sticking open while a vehicle merged onto a highway at maximum acceleration, while two other complaints said the throttles stuck open at highway speeds. No crashes or injuries were reported.

The agency will review its own customer complaint files and request data from Chrysler before deciding whether to upgrade the investigation to a more serious engineering analysis of the vehicles.