DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. today said it is issuing two additional recalls of its 2013 Escape crossover after receiving reports of fires in 13 more vehicles.
They bring the total number of recalls of the 2013 Escape to seven, five of which involve fire risks on models equipped with a 1.6-liter engine. One of the new recalls is to inspect repairs done to 11,821 vehicles as part of a previous campaign, after Ford discovered that service technicians installed some fuel lines incorrectly.
The larger of the recalls cover 161,334 vehicles globally, including 139,917 in the United States. Ford said the engine cylinder head in those vehicles could overheat, causing cracking and oil leaks that could result in a fire under the hood. The company said no one was injured in the reported fires.
All of the vehicles involved in the smaller recall, 9,469 of which are in the United States, also are covered by the larger one.
Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker said some Escapes are part of all five recalls related to fire risks, though she did not know how many. The previous recalls were announced in July, September and November of 2012.
"In some cases it's the same vehicle, but other than that it's a different issue," Felker said. "The recalls we've done previously have been effective. This is a separate issue."
Felker said Ford does not know how many of the vehicles being recalled to reinspect fuel-line installations need repairs. If the lines were improperly installed, they could chafe over time and leak fuel. Ford has received reports of gasoline odors and leaks but no fires or injuries.
"We found that some of the vehicles had been incorrectly serviced," Felker said. "Out of an abundance of caution, we're going to bring them back and make sure."
Ford said it would begin making repairs Jan. 23. To address the overheating issue, it plans to modify the engine shielding, cooling and control systems. Vehicles subject to both of the new recalls also would have their fuel lines inspected and repaired, if necessary, at the same time.
"Ford is committed to providing our customers with top quality vehicles," Ford said in an e-mailed statement. "We are equally committed to addressing potential issues and responding quickly for our customers.
"This is a voluntary recall that we have chosen to initiate because we believe it is the right thing to do. While we recognize the inconvenience recalls cause our customers, we believe they will appreciate these actions, which we are taking on their behalf to help ensure their safety."
Although the repeated recalls of the Escape, which was redesigned for the 2013 model year, raised questions about Ford's quality and vehicle launch processes, they have not had a significant effect on sales.
The Escape was Ford's second most popular nameplate in 2012, behind only the F-series pickup, and sales have risen 14 percent to 250,543 vehicles this year through October. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received 117 complaints about the 2013 Escape, compared with 72 complaints about the 2012 model, which hasn't been recalled.
Separately, Ford said today that it is recalling 7,329 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid cars to reprogram the powertrain control module. It said a manufacturing error in a sensor could cause the module to incorrectly think the car is in neutral and allow the transmission to shift out of park without the brake pedal applied. This could cause the vehicle to move unexpectedly and violates government regulations regarding theft protection and rollaway prevention.
Ford said it is not aware of any accidents, injuries or thefts related to that issue. The recall covers 2013 and 2014 MKZ Hybrid cars built through Sept. 24.