Ford issues four recalls covering 590,000 vehicles

David Shepardson
Detroit News Washington Bureau

Washington — Ford Motor Co. said Wednesday it is recalling about 590,000 vehicles in four separate campaigns — most for steering issues in 20 cold weather states.

The Dearborn automaker is calling back 518,000 2013-15 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ vehicles and 2015 Ford Edge vehicles in North America for steering gear motor attachment bolts that may break due to rust cracking. If the steering gear motor bolts break, the steering system may default to manual steering mode, making the vehicle more difficult to steer, especially at lower speeds. This would not result in a loss of steering, but could result in an increased risk of a crash.

Vehicles included in this recall were originally sold in, or are currently registered in Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin. Also included are the Canadian corrosion provinces of Ontario, Quebec, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Customers located in non-corrosion states or provinces will be covered by extended warranty if they experience similar concerns.

Dealers will replace steering gear motor attachment bolts on customer vehicles with new bolts, seal them, and replace damaged steering gears at no cost to the customer. There are no reports of crashes related to the issue.

Ford is also recalling 50,000 2014 Ford Focus, Edge, Escape and Transit Connect vehicles and 2014-15 Ford Fiesta vehicles in North America for an issue with nickel plating on the fuel pump, which may cause it to seize. If the fuel pump seizes, a vehicle may not start or may stall while driving. An engine stall without warning while driving increases the risk of a crash.

Ford is aware of one allegation of a crash that may be related to this condition. Dealers will replace the fuel delivery module.

Ford is also recalling 22,600 2015 Lincoln MKZ vehicles in North America because when the headlamps are on, the park lamps are brighter than regulations allow, and may adversely affect the vision of oncoming drivers. Dealers will update the body control module software, which controls the intensity of the park lamps.

Ford, too, is recalling 91 2015 Ford F-150 vehicles in North America for a potential issue with certain underbody heat shields that may be improperly installed or missing, increasing the risk of fire. Ford is not aware of any accidents, injuries or fires related to this condition. There are 73 vehicles in the United States and 18 in Canada. Dealers will inspect for missing underbody heat shields and fasteners and install missing components as needed.

Ford CEO Mark Fields meet with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration chief Mark Rosekind on Thursday in Detroit. Last week, NHTSA prodded Ford to expand a recall of vehicles for faulty door latches to a nationwide campaign after Ford initially suggested a smaller recall.