Ford Recalls 2013 Escape, Again Over Fire Risk

Ford Recalls Escape

Ford Motor Co. is recalling nearly 140,000 2013 Ford Escape SUVs with 1.6L engines in the United States because the possibility of underhood fires due to overheating of the engine cylinder head leading to cracks causing oil leaks.

On Tuesday, Ford says they are issuing a second recall to cover 9,469 2013 Escapes in the U.S. that will need to be inspected in order to prevent a fuel leak that could also potentially result in an engine compartment fire.

Ford says the oil leaks caused 13 fires but no injuries. There haven’t been any fires from the fuel line problems.

In documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Ford said it began to get engine fire reports on Escapes in late August, and began investigating. USA Today reports they were eventually able to duplicate the cylinder head cracking and decided to issue a recall. During the investigation, Ford also found warranty claims of fuel line leaks and decided to repair them as well.

Owners will be notified of the recalls by mail by Jan. 23, 2014 to take the SUVs to their local dealer to have “enhancements to the engine shielding, cooling and control systems made to their vehicles.”

In March, Ford recalled about 5,600 Escapes to check the child lock on the rear left-hand door in several vehicles.

In late July, Ford paid a $17.4 million penalty to U.S. regulators for failing to quickly recall nearly 424,000 Ford Escape SUVs from model years 2001 to 2004 regarding stuck throttles when the gas pedal was fully or almost fully depressed. According to Reuters, it was the largest possible penalty NHTSA, a unit of the U.S. Department of Transportation, can collect.

Ford is also recalling 7,329 Lincoln MKZ hybrid vehicles globally from model years 2013 and 2014 to reprogram the power train control module. They may not conform to U.S. requirements that the brake be depressed before the car can be shifted out of park. No accidents or injuries were reported relating to this issue.

“Those are great lessons learned. We’re dealing with them now,” Ford president and CEO Alan Mulally said in January. “We were very disappointed it happened on a fantastic vehicle. We’re always learning new things and we’ll fix the process.”

Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker states, “We’re committed to providing our customers with top-quality vehicles and are equally committed to addressing potential issues and responding quickly for our customers.”

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