Recall Alert: 2013-2014 Ford C-Max, Fusion, Escape and Lincoln MKZ

2014FordC-MaxRecall

Vehicles Affected: Nearly 750,000 model-year 2013-14 Ford C-Max hatchbacks built at the Michigan Assembly Plant between Jan. 19, 2012, to Nov. 21, 2013; Fusion sedans built at the Hermosillo Assembly Plant in Mexico between Feb. 3, 2013, and Aug. 24, 2013; Escape crossovers built at the Louisville Assembly Plant between Oct. 5, 2011, and Nov. 1, 2013; and Lincoln MKZ sedans built at the Hermosillo Assembly Plant between April 25, 2012, and Sept. 30, 2013

The Problem: The restraints control module may experience a short circuit; if this occurs, the airbag warning indicator will illuminate. Depending on the location of the short circuit, the deployable restraint systems (airbags, side curtain airbags, pretensioners) may not function properly in a crash, increasing the risk of an injury. In addition, the short circuit may affect the function of other systems that use data from the restraints control module, including stability control, in which case the corresponding warning indicator would also illuminate. Ford, which announced the voluntary recall today, said it is unaware of any accidents or injuries related to the problem.

The Fix: Ford will notify owners and dealers will replace the restraints control module for free. The automaker has not yet announced a notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Ford at 800-392-3673 for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | September 26, 2014 | Comments (3)

Recall Alert: 2014 Ford Focus, C-Max

2014FordFocusRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 500 model-year 2014 Ford Focus compact cars and C-Max hybrids manufactured between Aug. 8 and Aug. 15, 2014

The Problem: Incorrectly assembled steering gears could cause impaired steering, including a loss of steering control, increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: Ford will begin notifying owners on Sept. 8, and dealers will replace the steering gears for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Ford at 800-392-3673, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | August 29, 2014 | Comments (0)

Reduced MPG in Six Ford Models Matches Cars.com's Results

CMax_2013_ES

If Cars.com editors' observed mileage is any indication, more drivers should see real-world fuel economy figures that match the new EPA numbers on six Ford models.

Ford Lowers Fuel Economy Ratings on Six Cars, Will Reimburse Owners

Ford announced June 12 that it would reduce EPA mileage on six vehicles – the 2013-2014 C-Max Hybrid and C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid, the 2013-2014 Fusion Hybrid and Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid, the 2013-2014 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid and the 2014 Fiesta – because of an error in EPA mileage tests. The revisions, which downgrade EPA combined mileage as much as 7 mpg on the hybrids, will appear on new-car window stickers this week.

We've tracked mileage in four of those six cars, and our results fall a lot closer to the revised numbers than what they used to be. We haven't spent enough time behind the wheel of the Fusion Energi or MKZ Hybrid to report on mileage yet, but here are the rest:

By Kelsey Mays | June 16, 2014 | Comments (8)

Recall Alert: 2013-2014 Ford C-Max and Escape

2014-ford-escape

Vehicles Affected: Approximately 594,785 model-year 2013-14 Ford C-Max and Escape vehicles

The Problem: A programming error could delay side curtain airbag deployment in a rollover crash. This increases the risk of injury.

The Fix: Dealers will reprogram the restraint control module for free.

What Owners Should Do: Ford will notify owners starting May 26. Owners can call Ford at 800-392-3673 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888-327-4236 for more information.

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Manufacturer image

By Jennifer Geiger | May 12, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2013-2014 Ford Fusion, Escape, C-Max, Lincoln MKZ

2014FordFusion

Vehicles Affected: About 42,972 model-year 2013-2014 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ sedans, and Ford Escape SUVs and C-Max Energi and Hybrid vehicles

The Problem:The vehicles' seatback frames do not comply with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration standards, according to the Detroit News. Certain driver and front passenger seatback assemblies may have been produced with substandard welds joining the seatback recliner mechanism to the seatback frame. This could increase the risk of injury in a collision, the newspaper reported. No crashes or injuries have been reported as a result of the faulty frames.

The Fix: Dealers will replace the seatback frames for free. Ford has not yet listed an owner notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332 for more info.

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Manufacturer image

By Matt Schmitz | April 7, 2014 | Comments (0)

Ford C-Max Solar Energi Concept at the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show

Front

Looks like: An accessorized C-Max Energi
Defining characteristics: Solar panels atop the roof
Ridiculous features: A solar-magnifying canopy the car has to sit under
Chances of being mass-produced: There's potential; Ford plans real-world feasibility testing

What's a petawatt? It's a unit of energy equivalent to 1 billion megawatts or 1 million gigawatts (yes, Doc Brown used real units). And Mike Tinskey, Ford's director of vehicle electrification, says 174 of them hit the Earth each day in the form of solar energy. Toward that end, Ford wants to collect some of that energy with 1.5 square meters of solar photovoltaic panels atop the C-Max Energi. Witness the solar-powered adaptation of the plug-in hybrid that went on sale in fall 2012: the C-Max Solar Energi Concept.

The concept's flexible, high-density silicone solar panels come courtesy of San Jose, Calif.-based SunPower Corp. — and those panels harvest 50 percent more density than conventional solar cells, Ford claims. Still, the cells alone won't charge the C-Max Energi to its full battery, which enables up to 21 miles of the electric vehicle's driving range.

By Kelsey Mays | January 2, 2014 | Comments (3)

How Can I Improve Fuel Economy in the 2013 Ford C-Max?

"I have had a 2013 Ford C-Max for four months and am getting about 37 mpg. How does one manage to get over 40 mpg? Use little brake? Keep heat low? Buy premium gasoline? I would appreciate any advice and convincing that I did not make huge mistake to not buy a Toyota Prius as originally planned."

Alina

By Rick Popely | November 3, 2013 | Comments (23)

Recall Alert: 2012-2013 Ford Focus EV, 2013 C-Max

2013-ford-c-max-energi

Vehicles Affected: Approximately 22,000 model-year 2012-2013 versions of the Ford Focus electric car and model-year 2013 versions of the Ford C-Max hybrid and C-Max Energi electric crossover.

The Problem: The Detroit News is reporting that Ford is recalling the above vehicles equipped with push-button start because they don't emit an alert when the driver's door is open. Not only is this functionality a federal safety requirement, it also prevents drivers from accidentally leaving their key fobs in the car.

The Fix: Ford dealers will modify the vehicles' software to ensure an audible door chime sounds if the driver's door is open.

What Owners Should Do: Ford has not provided an owner notification schedule. Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332 for more information.

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By Jennifer Geiger | October 15, 2013 | Comments (1)

EPA to Update Procedures to Keep Up With Industry

EPA_sticker_2013
In the wake of Ford lowering the EPA combined city/highway mileage by 4 mpg for the 2013 C-Max Hybrid, the EPA plans to hire some 40% more employees to audit gas mileage and revamp its rules on what needs to be tested.

Amid Complaints, Ford to Drop C-Max Hybrid to 43 MPG

Chris Grundler, who directs the EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality, told USA Today the agency will "update general-labeling regulations" — the crux of the issue for the C-Max rerating.

The EPA elaborated Thursday in a press release: "Developed in 1977, EPA label regulations allow, but do not require, vehicles with the same engine, transmission and weight class to use the same fuel economy label value data, since, historically, such vehicle families achieve nearly identical fuel economy performance." As we reported in a 2012 investigation, carmakers can voluntarily rerate cars — which, for example, Toyota does with its Prius variants, according to USA Today. But they don't have to.

By Kelsey Mays | August 16, 2013 | Comments (0)

Ford to Reimburse C-Max Owners For MPG Discrepancy

Ford_Cmax2

At a press conference this afternoon, Ford announced it would reimburse current owners of model-year 2013 C-Max vehicles $550 for a 4-mpg difference in its EPA combined city/highway mileage. Lessees will receive $325. Further updates for the 2014 C-Max could raise mileage beyond 43 mpg, which applies to the 2013 C-Max only.

Ford says it voluntarily rerated the 2013 model because the current car matches the Fusion Hybrid's mileage under the EPA's "general label rules." Raj Nair, Ford's group vice president of global product development, told reporters those rules date "back to the 1970s, and they were created by the EPA as a general means to provide fuel economy labels without having to test every single vehicle in the industry." Most cars are rated using this rule, Nair said.

As we reported in November 2012, that policy allows the EPA and automakers to rate cars with common weight and drivetrain characteristics under the same mileage label — but it can be problematic, as in this case where "combining sedans like the Fusion Hybrid with crossover utility vehicles like the C-Max hybrid under a single, general label could result in anomalies," Nair said.

By Kelsey Mays | August 15, 2013 | Comments (3)

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