Ford issues 4 recalls as NHTSA ramps up safety concerns – Detroit Free Press
Ford issued four new recalls today, involving almost 600,000 vehicles in North America, in a week where safety officials are highlighting the need to ensure recalls are issued and vehicles fixed in a timely manner.
Ford’s latest recalls include about 520,000 vehicles to fix steering gear bolts as well as smaller actions to address parking lights, fuel pumps and heat shields. One accident and no injuries are attributed to the problems cited in the recalls.
The new recalls come a day after a day-long workshop in Washington organized by Mark Rosekind, administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, borne of his concern that action is not being taken fast enough to address a number of major recalls involving numerous automakers.
Rosekind told reporters in Washington he will be in Detroit Thursday to meet with General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles officials on safety matters.
The new Ford recalls include:
— 518,313 2013-15 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ mid-size sedans and 2015 Ford Edge crossovers, including 487,301 in the U.S. for bolts on steering gear motor attachments that can corrode, crack and break, leaving the driver in manual steering mode which is tougher to steer, especially at slow speeds. No accidents or injuries have been reported involving the vehicles made in Flat Rock, Mich., Oakville, Ont. and Hermosillo, Mexico.
The recall is for vehicles in parts of North America where corrosion is possible. Dealers will replace the bolts and replace damaged gears.
— 22,616 2015 Lincoln MKZ mid-size sedans, including 21,435 in the U.S., because when the headlamps are on, the park lamps are brighter than regulations allow. Dealers will update the software on the affected vehicles which were built in Mexico. No accidents or injuries have been reported.
— 91 2015 Ford F-150 pickups, including 73 in the U.S., where some underbody heat shields may be missing or improperly installed which poses the risk of fire. No accidents, injuries or fires have been reported. Dealers will inspect the trucks assembled at the Dearborn Truck Plant and install missing components as needed.
— 50,157 2014 Ford Focus, Edge, Escape and Transit Connect vehicles and 2014-15 Ford Fiestas, including 45,505 in the U.S., because a problem with the nickel plating on the fuel pump could cause it to seize and then the vehicle could stall or not start. Ford has been alerted to an accident that may be related to the problem. The vehicles were built at the Michigan and Louisville assembly plants in the U.S., Oakville, Ont. plant in Canada, Cuautitlán plant in Mexico and Valencia plant in Spain. Dealers will replace the fuel delivery module.
Rosekind is expected to meet with Ford CEO Mark Fields and GM CEO Mary Barra as well as top FCA officials but not CEO Sergio Marchionne who is in Europe.
Rosekind has said he is pleased that Ford last week agreed to recall 390,000 cars for faulty door latches. He is less pleased with FCA’s handling of the recall of some Jeep models with rear-mounted gas tanks that have been linked to fiery accidents. And he is not happy with the speed with which the industry is replacing defective air bags from supplier Takata that have been linked to a number of deaths and injuries.
At the workshop on Tuesday with industry and safety officials, Rosekind said he will decide in the next few weeks whether to reopen NHTSA’s investigation into the Jeep recall. Chrysler insists its vehicles are safe and fixes in place are enough. The automaker is also planning to appeal a $150 million verdict in a case where a young boy was killed while riding in Jeep that was struck and caught fire.
The Detroit visit is to foster relationships with the new NHTSA administrator who took the top safety job in December.
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