Recalled Ford Expedition, Lincoln Navigator Vehicles Pose Engine Fire Risk Even When Parked
Following at least 21 reported vehicle fires involving Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigators, including instances where the vehicles burst into flames while parked with the ignition off, the auto-maker is urging owners to park the SUVs outside and has expanded a prior recall to include certain Ford Escape, Maverick, Escape, and Corsair vehicles that may experience the same electrical and engine failure issues.
Ford announced the Expedition and Navigator recall expansion on July 8, adding approximately 27,000 additional SUV’s to the recall, after identifying the vehicles may be prone to electrical issues that may cause a short-circuiting event leading to unexpected fires.
The expansion notice warns owners to park their vehicles outside and away from structures until dealer’s repair the issue, as the vehicles may pose a risk of under hood fire, including while the vehicle is parked and off.
The initial Ford Navigator and Expedition recall earlier this year in May, after at least 16 warranty claims were received involving non-collision engine compartment fires started. At the time of the initial announcement, Ford announced some of the warranty claims showed signs of melted battery junction boxes, but a common root cause of the fires had not been identified across all incidents.
Since that initial recall, the automaker has received five addition reports of vehicle fires, and has expanded the scope of the recall to include a total of 66,221 model year 2021 Expedition and Navigator SUVs built in the U.S. built between July 27, 2020 and August 31, 2021.
Ford states that a change in manufacturing location by one of its parts suppliers during the COVID-19 pandemic may have caused the printed circuit boards to be uniquely susceptible to a high-current short.
As part of the recall repair, dealers are being instructed to inspect the battery junction box for melting damage, and replacing the entire component if damage is found. For the vehicles with an 800-watt cooling fan, Ford states a repair remedy is available immediately, while impacted vehicles with a 700-watt cooling fan system will require an auxiliary box with a wire jumper that will not be available until September.
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Alongside the Navigator and Expedition recall expansion, Ford told Reuters last week it would also be recalling approximately 100,000 model year 2020 through 2022 model-year Ford Escape, Maverick and Lincoln Corsair vehicles with 2.5-liter Hybrid/Plug-In Hybrid engines.
The Escape, Maverick and Lincoln Corsair recall is prompted by 23 reports of engine failure issues that could lead to vehicles fires. Ford said the problems are related to engine failure issues that can allow engine oil and fuel vapor to flood the ignition sources.
Although an official announcement of the recall has not be released by the NHTSA, the automaker told Reuters no accidents or injuries have been reported in relation to the recall and that the repair remedy will include modifying the engine shield and grille to allow for better airflow.
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