Chrysler is recalling about 469,000 Jeeps worldwide, including about 295,000 in the United States, because the transmission could shift by itself from park into neutral, according to a report posted on the website of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The affected models are the 2006-10 Jeep Commanders and 2005-10 Grand Cherokees.

Two injuries and 26 accidents apparently were related to the defect, a Chrysler spokesman, Eric Mayne, wrote in an e-mail. He said he wasn't aware of the severity of the injuries but that they were not fatal.

Chrysler told the safety agency that a software problem could instruct the transmission to shift into neutral when the vehicle is being started. The automaker first learned of the issue almost 16 months ago. In March, it completed testing a fix but didn't conclude until this month that a recall was necessary.

Chrysler described the recall as voluntary, but once a manufacturer is aware of a safety problem it must tell the NHTSA of its plan for the recall within five business days or face a civil fine.

new york times