The 300's Door Panels Melt and Warp Under the Heat of the Sun

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#interior #lawsuit
An overhead view where you can see the panel has pulled away from the window in a long curve

The interior door panels of the 2nd generation 300 are warping and, in some cases, falling off. The issue also affects the Dodge Charger, another Stellantis (formerly Fiat-Chrysler) vehicle.

Why Are the Panels Peeling From the Door?

Most of the warping occurs where the door panels meet the windows. While most commonly seen on the driver's side front door, the issue can happen to any of the doors that are exposed to the sun on a hot day.

This is likely due to a combination of low quality panels and poor installation with an adhesive that can't stand the heat of the sun.

The obvious (and not so obvious) downsides

So what kind of problems will a warped panel create? For starters, they can interfere with the side airbag deployment. They can also prevent the door locks and anti-theft systems from activating, or mess with the heating and cooling systems.

Oh, and they also look like crap and reduce the car's resale value.

A nationwide back order on replacements

The problem is so widespread that owners say there's a huge backlog when waiting for replacement panels. And even if you're lucky enough to get one, it's the same defective panel installed in the same defective way. So it's only a matter of time before it fails in the same defective way.

Stellantis' response is underwhelming

The automaker has been accused of refusing to do anything about a problem that's been happening since the 2014 model year. And while FCA does offer replacements to owners under warranty, the process often takes months. This forces some owners to seek out a 3rd party solution, an act which some say is intentional.

It's a problem that can affect the side airbags from deploying or the doors from locking. It's also ugly-as-sin and drastically reduces the car's resale value.

Generations Where This Problem Has Been Reported

This problem has popped up in the following Chrysler generations.

Most years within a generation share the same parts and manufacturing process. You can also expect them to share the same problems. So while it may not be a problem in every year yet, it's worth looking out for.

OK, Now What?

Maybe you've experienced this problem. Maybe you're concerned you will soon. Whatever the reason, here's a handful of things you can do to make sure it gets the attention it deserves.

  1. File Your Complaint is a free site dedicated to uncovering problem trends and informing owners about potential issues with their cars. Major class action law firms use this data when researching cases.

    Add a Complaint
  2. Notify CAS

    The Center for Auto Safety (CAS) is a pro-consumer organization that researches auto safety issues & often compels the US government to do the right thing through lobbying & lawsuits.

    Notify The CAS
  3. Report a Safety Concern

    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is the US agency with the authority to conduct vehicle defect investigations & force recalls. Their focus is on safety-related issues.

    Report to NHTSA