The Safety Institute is a non-profit organization who’s main goal is injury prevention and product safety as a basis for a healthy and productive society and as a vital component to reducing health care costs. The group is currently involved in a variety of issues regarding product safety, including reports that monitor vehicle defect trends and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) recall and enforcement activities. Their quarterly compiled early warning list shows the top 15 vehicle trends that they say automakers and government should be paying attention to. Continue reading

Ford will be asking owners of some 20132014 Escape SUV’s and 20132014 Focus ST cars, equipped with 2.0 litre engines, to return their vehicles to a Ford dealership to repair a problem that could result in the engine hesitating and stalling.

According to reports filed at the NHTSA website, a splice in the engine wiring harness may have not been sufficiently crimped. The innsufficient crimp could result in a high resistance to the engine sensor circuits, causing the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) to illuminate, reduced engine power, hesitation, rough running, or stalling without warning. An unexpected engine stall could increase the risk of an accident. Continue reading

A safety defect in the steering system of certain 2014 Ford C-Max and Focus vehicles will have customers returning their cars for repairs. According to reports on the NHTSA website, on August 12, 2014, Ford was notified by their steering gear supplier that some gears were produced with less than the intended number of ball bearings. Steering gears with this condition could experience deformation and degradation of the ball bearings which could result in loss of steering control. Continue reading

Ford has identified a software error in certain 2013-2014 Escape and C-Max vehicles that could cause a delayed deployment of the side curtain rollover air bags. According to reports filed with the NHTSA, the supplier of the Restraint Control Module (RCM), reversed polarity of the vertical axis sensing configuration file of the Safety Canopy System. The deployment of the safety canopy may be delayed in certain rollover circumstanced, potentially increasing the risk of injury during an accident. Continue reading

Owners of certain 2013 Ford Escape sport utility vehicles are questioning whether their vehicles are lemons after receiving repeated recall notices and Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs). Nine notices have been issued within the past year for assorted problems involving fluid leaks, overheating engines, and potential engine fires. The most recent problem involves certain 2013-2014 Ford C-Max, Escape, and Fusion vehicles as well as certain 2013-2014 Lincoln MKZ vehicles. Continue reading

In November 2013, Ford experienced a small number of warranty reports associated with seat recliners in certain Ford and Lincoln vehicles. A review of the seat supplier manufacturing information identified certain production conditions that could result in sub-standard seat recliner welds. Ford will be asking owners to return their vehicles to a manufacturer approved dealership to have the problem corrected. Continue reading

The NHTSA is ending an investigation into allegations of electronic throttle failure in Ford and Mercury vehicles. Instead, Ford will be conducting a special Customer Satisfaction Program (CSP) in which they will be contacting owners to take their vehicles to a manufacturer approved dealership to update the power-train calibration software to improve vehicle performance. Ford will also extend their power-train warranty coverage for up to 10 years of service or 150,000 miles. Continue reading