Ford Motor Co. said it is recalling more than 465,000 vehicles in several popular models -- including the 2013 Ford Fusion sedan -- after discovering problems with fuel delivery modules, engine block heaters and missing steering gear parts.
A Ford spokeswoman said today that three different recalls for several of its best-selling cars were sent to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last week. The biggest recall affects about 465,000 vehicles.
The 2013 Ford Explorer SUV, Taurus sedan, Flex crossover, Fusion sedan, Police Interceptor Utility and Police Interceptor Sedan; and the 2013 Lincoln MKS sedan, MKT crossover, and MKZ sedan are all being recalled because a fuel delivery module in the vehicles’ fuel tanks may leak, representing a fire risk. Customers affected by the defect may smell a fuel odor or observe leaks.
Ford said it had received 600 complaints about the leaks since March 31 but said it has not received reports of any fires, accidents or injuries as a result. The recall affects about 465,000 vehicles throughout the world.
Here’s how the recall breaks down by model:
- Explorer: 190,896
- Taurus: 79,567
- Flex: 27,574
- Fusion: 122,638
- Police Interceptor Utility: 8,384
- Police Interceptor Sedan: 11,517
- MKS: 13,381
- MKT: 6,599
- MKZ: 5,512
The geographical breakdown is:
- 389,151 vehicles in the United States;
- 23,420 in Canada;
- 7,563 in Mexico; and
- More than 45,000 in Europe, South America, Asia Pacific, Africa and elsewhere.
Ford also is recalling 500 2013 Lincoln MKZ sedans --107 in the United States and 393 in Canada -- that are equipped with engine block heaters. The company says insulation on the heaters’ 120-volt electrical cords may crack in subzero temperatures, exposing electrical wire. Ford says the defect could cause corrosion or shock individuals who handle the heaters, though it has received no reports of either problem occurring in the field.
The launch of the 2013 MKZ was delayed about four months while Lincoln sorted out quality glitches at Ford’s factory in Hermosillo, Mexico. Some MKZs were shipped to Ford’s assembly plant in Flat Rock, Mich., for quality inspections and repairs during the winter.
The delays angered some dealers, who said they received conflicting explanations from Lincoln, resulting in lost credibility and lost orders from customers. Lincoln executives insisted that they didn’t want to ship vehicles until all quality problems were sorted out.
Ford also is recalling 23 2013 Fusion sedans for faulty steering gears. Drivers of those vehicles may experience impaired steering or loss of steering control because the cars may have been manufactured without an internal retaining clip, a part that often holds two parts of a vehicle’s assembly together. The cars were built at the Hermosillo plant between April 19 and 23, 2013.
The company said 20 of the affected Fusions are in the United States, one is in Canada, and two are in Mexico. Ford says five of the 20 in the United States have already been repaired.
The 2013 Fusion -- Ford’s best-selling car in the United States so far this year -- was the subject of two recalls in late 2012, one for faulty headlamps and one for coolant system leaks. The latter recall also included the 2013 Escape.
Ford said today it sold 136,833 Fusions in the U.S. market through May, a 22 percent gain over the same five months of 2012.
This is also not the first time a problem has been reported with the 2013 Explorer’s fuel tank. The Explorer, along with the Taurus and Lincoln MKS, were recalled in March for faulty sealing on side of the tanks.
The latest recalls were not posted on NHTSA’s Web site as of Monday morning. The Detroit News reported the recalls on Friday.
Bradford Wernle contributed to this report.