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Greetings all,


This morning when my wife tried to leave for work, she got in her 2018 Pacifica Hybrid pushed the start button, moved to the transmission selector to D and saw the D blinking and the car would not drive. Googling hasn't turned up a definitive answer to what causes this, though the hybrid battery seems to be the primary suspect.


Anyone have any more info on this issue or can give me a pointer as to the cause? My wife is in a a mobility chair and has a lift in the back of the PacHy, so this has become a high priority for me.




Thanks much,
MB
 

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This can be caused by a low 12 volt battery. You can check the battery with a voltmeter at the red jump-start post under the hood. You can probably get a trouble code by plugging in a scanner into the OBDII port, but that probably won't help much. Diagnosing any of the other possibilities besides the 12 volt battery is going to require having it towed to the dealer. It is rarely the hybrid battery cells themselves but there are components built in to the battery pack that can fail and result in replacement of the entire pack because Chrysler does not consider the pack to be dealer serviceable. Another possibility is the power inverter module bolted to the engine. Even if your basic factory warranty has expired all of the hybrid components should still be under warranty, either 8 years or 10 years, depending on which state you live in.
 

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This will also occur if the brake is not pressed (or pressed hard enough) to engage “Ready” mode when turning the vehicle on.

The MIL will illuminate also but is not due to a fault in the system.

Its much like when an Engine is not running in this situation.
 

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Thank you both for your suggestions.


The situation was resolved by a "firmware update to the battery," at the dealer but no cause was given. Just a shoulder shrug. This is totally unacceptable to me and our first experience with Chrysler may very well be our last.


And here I thought the unreliable Uconnect was bad news...




-MB
 

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The situation was resolved by a "firmware update to the battery," at the dealer but no cause was given. Just a shoulder shrug. This is totally unacceptable to me and our first experience with Chrysler may very well be our last.
What’s an example of an explanation that would have satisfied you?

Cars are rolling computers. Having worked in technology for a couple of decades, I’ve shrugged my shoulders an uncountable number of times when someone asked me to explain how or why a problem occurred. It’s simply not possible to do in many cases. You fix it not by going into the code and figuring out which line has a mistake, but rather by applying a patch or update. Some bugs are documented, some just get fixed (intentionally or unintentionally) without mention.

Would you rather have someone be truthful in saying that they don’t know an answer, or blow smoke up your rear? Is the objective to have it fixed, or is the objective to actually know and understand the true nature of the problem? If it’s the latter, I doubt that any service technician would have the level of training to provide an answer that a layman could reasonably understand.
 

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What’s an example of an explanation that would have satisfied you?

Cars are rolling computers. Having worked in technology for a couple of decades, I’ve shrugged my shoulders an uncountable number of times when someone asked me to explain how or why a problem occurred. It’s simply not possible to do in many cases. You fix it not by going into the code and figuring out which line has a mistake, but rather by applying a patch or update. Some bugs are documented, some just get fixed (intentionally or unintentionally) without mention.

Would you rather have someone be truthful in saying that they don’t know an answer, or blow smoke up your rear? Is the objective to have it fixed, or is the objective to actually know and understand the true nature of the problem? If it’s the latter, I doubt that any service technician would have the level of training to provide an answer that a layman could reasonably understand.

Are you serious or just trolling me?

The objective is to fix the problem and understand what caused it, so we can possibly prevent it from happening again. I would have accepted something like, "there was a bug in the firmware which caused the hybrid battery to stop accepting requests resulting in the transmission being permanently locked."

Just throwing your hands up and saying that what we in tech have done, ie ship crap code and expect our customers to deal with an endless stream of patches, can and should be applied to automobiles I reject outright. If Chrysler doesn't understand how some code within a hybrid battery can lock up their vehicle to the point of immobility, they shouldn't be using the technology.

And this isn't something that can be resolved by holding down Ctrl-Alt-Delete and rebooting. It requires getting a service appointment, which meant my wife's car was unavailable to her for four days. For you that might not be a problem, but given she's in a mobility chair, it meant she couldn't get to work for four days.

Would you advocate that Chrysler start forcing us to "Accept" EULAs that expressly disclaim any warranty of actual functioning the car like Apple and Microsoft do for their OSes?

Dur... Computers hard. Me no understand, so me no try.
 

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I’m just taking a realistic view. If the problem were mechanical, a specific part or interaction could be identified and explained. When the problem is software, it’s just not that easy. You’re basically asking for someone to BS you, so that your psychological need to feel that you “understand” a problem can be met. That’s a false peace of mind.

When the fix is to apply a software update, that’s the fix. You might feel you need more detail, but you’re simply not going to get it. Blaming Chrysler for that is silly.
 
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