Ford Updates Escape Software Amid NHTSA Investigation

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Ford's Escape is no stranger to recalls, but despite a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigation of sudden loss of engine power on certain versions of the Escape and Fusion and Mercury Mariner and Milan, the agency is not issuing a recall.

According to the Detroit News, more than 10,000 vehicle owners complained about the loss of power on model-year 2009-13 vehicles equipped with 2.5-liter and 3.0-liter engines. Ford issued a "Customer Satisfaction Program" and sent notices to affected owners in January instructing them to bring their vehicles in for a software recalibration. NHTSA opened its investigation in February, and although an official recall wasn't issued, Ford said it will update the software in 1.6 million affected vehicles as well as extend the warranty coverage on the affected parts to up to 10 years and 150,000 miles.

Check out the full story from the Detroit News here.

Manufacturer photo

By Jennifer Geiger | March 4, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2005-2011 Ford, Lincoln and Mercury Sedans

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Ford is recalling 370,000 model-year 2005-2011 versions of the Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis and Lincoln Town Car sedans due to a steering problem, the Detroit News is reporting.

In the affected vehicles, the lower intermediate steering shaft could corrode, resulting in a possible loss of steering. Ford said it's not aware of any accidents or injuries related to the recall, the paper reported.

States where corrosion is more likely to occur include Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

Dealers will inspect and replace the affected parts for free. Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332.

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By Jennifer Geiger | August 30, 2013 | Comments (5)

NHTSA: Chrysler Has Until June 18 to Recall Jeeps

2007JeepLiberty

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has given Chrysler a deadline of June 18 to formally respond to its request for the recall of 2.7 million model-year 1993-2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee and 2002-07 Liberty SUVs, according to the Detroit News. The recall request, due to a problem in the fuel system that could lead to a fire in rear-end crashes, initially was refused by Chrysler; the automaker insists the vehicles meet federal safety standards for fuel-system integrity.

Depending on the automaker's response, NHTSA will decide whether to issue a formal finding and then convene a public hearing, a final step before ordering a recall, the Detroit News reported. The safety agency says Chrysler "contravened industry trends," as well as its own practices in non-Jeep vehicles by placing the fuel tanks in a vulnerable location behind the rear axle. The resulting fires were caused by gas leaking from punctured fuel tanks in rear-end crashes, causing the deaths of 51 people, the Detroit News reported.

By Matt Schmitz | June 10, 2013 | Comments (1)

Ford Faces Class-Action Lawsuit Over Unintended Acceleration

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Consumers in 14 states have filed a class-action lawsuit against Ford over unintended acceleration in cars built between 2002 and 2010. The suit, which was filed in a West Virginia U.S. District Court on March 28, alleges that Ford models built between 2002 and 2010 with electronic throttles can allow unintended acceleration. The vehicles in question, which include nearly three-dozen Ford, Lincoln and Mercury nameplates, lack a brake override system. Ford began installing the system in its U.S. cars in 2010.

Plaintiffs want compensation for lost resale value as well as brake-override retrofits, according to one of several law firms representing the plaintiffs. Ford began installing brake-override systems in certain European vehicles as early as 2005, the suit claimed via the Detroit News.

Unintended acceleration from electronic throttles raises a familiar storyline. From September 2009 through December 2010, Toyota recalled some 12 million cars over unintended acceleration, eventually spending well over $1 billion to settle lawsuits and pay civil fees associated with the recalls. The automaker's electronic throttles encountered heavy scrutiny, but a government panel later found that driver error, stuck gas pedals and bad floormats were to blame.

By Kelsey Mays | April 1, 2013 | Comments (27)

Recall Alert: 2004-07 Ford Freestar and Mercury Monterey

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Ford is recalling 196,500 model-year 2004-06 versions of the Freestar and Mercury Monterey minivans due to a third-row corrosion issue, according to a Reuters report.

In the affected vehicles, corrosion could prevent the third row from locking into place. Ford told Reuters that the recall only applies to vehicles sold or registered in the District of Columbia and the following Salt Belt states: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Ford dealers will install a new third-row-seat mounting bracket for free. Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332 for more information. To look up your VIN on Ford’s recall site, click here.

Related
Ford recalls 230,000 minivans for corrosion issues (Reuters)
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By Jennifer Geiger | March 7, 2013 | Comments (1)

Mitsubishi Galant Prices Tumble in January

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Late-model used-car prices dipped slightly in January 2013, dropping about one-half of a percentage point ($101) from December 2012 to $22,662. However, a number of models saw significantly steeper declines. Leading the way was the Mitsubishi Galant.

The now-discontinued family sedan saw its average asking price drop 12% to $13,993, a decrease of nearly $2,000. Other models that have recently met the chopping block — the Mercury Milan and Mazda CX-7 — also saw some of the largest price drops of the month with declines of 4%.

Another Mitsubishi model, the Lancer compact car, saw the biggest price increase of the month with a 5% ($841) jump to $17,672. The Chevrolet Corvette saw the second-largest increase with a 4% rise but the largest dollar jump of $2,528 to $59,017.

The chart below details the top 10 used cars from the 2010 to 2012 model years with the biggest price drops — as well as the 10 with the biggest increases. To be eligible for the list, a model had to have 500 cars in Cars.com's national inventory.

By Mike Hanley | January 28, 2013 | Comments (3)

Recall Alert: 2004-05 Ford Freestar, Mercury Monterey

2004 Ford Freestar

Ford is recalling 205,896 Ford Freestar and Mercury Monterey minivans from the 2004-05 model years because the torque converter output shaft may fail, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

If the shaft fails, the driver may experience a sudden loss of motive power without warning, increasing the risk of a crash.

Ford or Lincoln dealers will replace the torque converter for free. The recall is expected to begin in the spring because the parts needed for repairs will not be available until then. Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332 or NHTSA’s vehicle safety hotline at 888-327-4236 for more info.

By Dave Lee | January 11, 2012 | Comments (2)

Recall Alert: 2010-11 Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan

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Ford is recalling 128,616 2010-11 Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan vehicles with 17-inch steel wheels because the wheel studs may fracture, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In the affected vehicles, multiple stud fractures could occur at the wheel location, and the driver may experience vehicle vibration or wheel separation, increasing the risk of a crash. The recalled vehicles were built between April 1 and April 30, 2009, and Dec. 1, 2009, and Nov. 13, 2010. You can see when your car was built by checking a label affixed to the driver-side doorjamb.

Owners will be notified the week of Jan. 24. Dealers will inspect the rear brake disc surface and replace the discs at no charge if necessary. The lug nuts will be replaced on all four wheels as well. Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332 or NHTSA’s vehicle safety hotline at 888-327-4236 for more info.

By Dave Lee | December 9, 2011 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2007 Ford Five Hundred, 2007 Mercury Montego

2007 Ford Five Hundred

Ford is recalling 2,945 Five Hundred and Mercury Montego sedans from the 2007 model year because the welding between the fuel tank and fuel filler neck spud may be weak, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In the affected vehicles, which were built between Sept. 5 and 11, 2006, the fuel tank spud welds may not provide enough strength in the event of a severe rear impact. An improper weld could create a crack in the joint. If the joint cracks, the emissions malfunction indicator light may illuminate, and the driver may smell fuel. Gas may also leak and cause a fire if an ignition source is present.

The recall is expected to begin Aug. 15. Dealers will replace the fuel tank for free. Owners can call Ford at 866-436-7332 or NHTSA’s vehicle safety hotline at 888-327-4236.

By Dave Lee | July 18, 2011 | Comments (0)

2011 Kia Optima Earns Five-Star NHTSA Rating

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The 2011 Kia Optima received an overall rating of five stars in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s new crash-test rating system, the agency announced today.

Read Cars.com's Full Review of the 2011 Kia Optima

The Optima’s overall composite score is composed of a five-star frontal, five-star rollover and a five-star rating for the combined side pole and barrier tests. The side barrier test is an area where other vehicles have shown weakness with the safety agency’s new testing format. The side pole test simulates a 20-mph side-impact crash into a 10-inch-diameter pole or tree at a 75-degree angle just behind the A-pillar on the driver’s side.

By Colin Bird | March 3, 2011 | Comments (0)

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