Ford acts quickly to extinguish Escape fire problem
A couple of weeks ago, a shuttle driver at Ford's Louisville (Ky.) Assembly Plant was driving a 2013 Escape from the assembly line to the shipping dock when a fire ignited under the hood. Ford investigators thought it was an isolated problem.
But then a Canadian customer reported a similar fire. When a third fire broke out under similar circumstances in Louisville, that was enough for Ford.
The company recalled 11,500 Escapes equipped with 1.6-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engines. Ford took the unusual step of asking customers to stop driving their vehicles until Ford could fix the problem: a defective fuel line that could leak gasoline onto hot engine parts.
Ford knows it can't afford a black eye in launching the redesigned Escape, its second-best-selling vehicle after the F-series pickup.
Of the 11,500 Escapes, 9,300 are in the United States and 2,200 in Canada; 4,800 have been sold to customers and the rest are in dealer stocks.
A Ford spokeswoman says Ford has notified customers and is shipping new fuel lines to dealers.
"If all our affected customers respond with the urgency we're hoping they will," she says, "it's possible we could have the entire recall population repaired within two weeks time."