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Ford recalls over 570,000 vehicles in North America, Europe for door latch problem

The defects are known to cause engine fires and doors to fly open unexpectedly.

  • Published: March 31, 2017 3:00 AM IST
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Ford is recalling more than 570,000 vehicles in North America and Europe to fix separate problems that can cause engine fires and doors to fly open unexpectedly. The recalls will hit the company’s bottom line in the first quarter of this year. Ford said in a today’s filing with securities regulators that the recalls will cut pretax earnings by USD 295 million. The engine fire recall covers over 360,000 vehicles in North America and Europe.

In North America it includes Escape SUVs from the 2014 model year, plus the 2014 and 2015 compact Fiesta ST, the 2013 and 2014 Fusion midsize car and the 2013 through 2015 Transit Connect small van. In Europe, the recall covers the 2010 through 2015 C-Max hybrid and Focus small car, and the 2013 through 2015 Transit Connect van. All the vehicles have 1.6-Liter four-cylinder turbocharged engines.

A lack of coolant circulation could cause the engine to overheat, causing a crack in the cylinder head, according to Ford. If that happens, pressurized oil can leak through the crack, and if it hits a hot surface, could cause and engine fire. The company says it has 29 reports of fires in the US and Canada, but no injuries. Owners can continue to drive the vehicles safely and park them in garages or other structures, spokeswoman Elizabeth Weigandt said. ALSO READ: Decision to end decade-long alliance with Kawasaki won’t affect overall business: Bajaj Auto

The company will mail customers instructions from the owner’s manual on how to check and refill coolant. Dealers also will check coolant levels for owners. If vehicles leak coolant or overheat, they should be taken to a dealer, Weigandt said. If parts are available, dealers will install a coolant level sensor and a warning light on the dashboard telling owners if the coolant level is low, Weigandt said. She did not know if the company will fix coolant leaks, but said she would check. ALSO READ: Honda cars to face de-growth in India this fiscal

The company also is adding 211,000 vehicles to a 2015 recall to replace faulty door latches. That recall covers the 2014 Fiesta and the 2013 and 2014 Fusion and Lincoln MKZ. The expansion brings the total from the 2015 recall to nearly 757,000. Door latches have been a major problem for Ford vehicles during the past three years, resulting in investigations by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and recalls of over 3 million vehicles. The company recalled more than 2.3 million vehicles last fall because their door latches weren’t working properly. That recall included the 2012-2015 Ford Focus and the 2013-2015 Ford Escape and C-Max. In May 2014, Ford recalled 692,700 Escape SUVs from the 2013-2014 model years because their doors didn’t latch properly.

  • Published Date: March 31, 2017 3:00 AM IST