Ford Motor Co. is recalling more than 89,000 vehicles from their 2013 model year, including Ford Escape crossover SUV’s and Fusion vehicles, suggesting that it is not safe for owners to continue to drive them due to the risk of overheating engines, which may catch fire.
The Ford Escape and Ford Fusion recall affects vehicles with a 1.6-liter engine that were sold in the United States and Canada.
According to company officials, the Ford engine problems stem from leaking fluids that may come in contact with hot parts and potentially cause vehicle fires.
At least twelve fires have already been reported among the recalled 2013 Ford Fusion and Escape vehicles, although no injuries have been reported.
Ford is unsure of the exact cause of the malfunction and is working on a solution. In the meantime, the auto maker is urging consumers not to continue driving their vehicles until a solution can be found.
“It is important that affected customers not ignore this recall and contact their dealer as soon as possible,” Steve Kenner, director of Ford’s Automotive Safety Office, said in a statement released Friday.
The recall affects Fusions and Escapes with 1.6 liter engines, and SE and SEL packages. This includes approximately 73,000 Escapes and nearly 16,000 Fusions of the already 220,000 Escapes and 207,000 Fusions sold this year, according to Autodata Corp. The Escape and Fusion underwent a complete redesign for the 2013 model year.
The recall is the fourth this year to affect new Escapes. Ford recalled nearly 8,000 Escapes in September because of a coolant leak which caused engines to overheat and catch fire.
Ford also recalled the Escape in July for two different problems. First, a problem with fuel lines cracking and leaking was determined to also lead to fire and forced the company to recall more than 11,000 Escapes. The company then recalled more than 450,000 Ford Escape vehicles due to throttle problems.
Safety experts have suggested that more than three recalls in the first year of a vehicle redesign are an indication of serious problems with the quality of the vehicle.
Company officials are working on a fix for the Ford Escape and Fusion vehicles. Many owners reported dashboard warning lights and messages including “Engine Power Reduced to Lower Temps” or Engine over temp, stop safely.” Officials warn if dashboard lights illuminate, take precaution and pull off the road, shut off the car and leave the vehicle.
The company urges owners to contact dealers to arrange for loaner vehicles, at no charge, until the owner’s cars can be repaired. For more information regarding the recall call (866) 436-7332 or visit Ford’s website, www.ford.com. Click “View Notices and Recalls” in the “Support” tab. Owner’s of the vehicles can input the 17-digit vehicle identification number to find out if their vehicle is included in the recall.
Photo Courtesy of noelweathers via Flickr CC by 2.0