Ford has just issued a safety recall of some 1.3 million Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ models from the 2014 to 2018 model years. Gradually loosening steering wheel bolts could eventually cause steering wheels to detach from the steering wheel column.
In its announcement of the recall, Ford explained that “in affected vehicles, the steering wheel bolt may not maintain torque, allowing the bolt to loosen over time, and if not serviced, a steering wheel could potentially detach and lead to a loss of steering control and increased risk of a crash”.
The company has knowledge of two cases of accidents caused by this problem; one of these caused an injury.
The affected models are the following:
- 2014-2017 Ford Fusions assembled at the Flat Rock assembly plant between August 6, 2013 and February 29, 2016.
- 2014-2018 Ford Fusions assembled at the Hermosillo plant between July 25, 2013 and March 5, 2018.
- 2018-2018 Lincoln MKZ models assembled at the Hermosillo plant between July 25, 2013 and March 5, 2018.
In all, 1,378,637 vehicles are affected by the recall in North America, including 62,479 in Canada.
Ford’s reference number for the recall is 18S08. Dealerships will replace the defective bolt free of charge.
At the same time, Ford also issued recalls of two other models: Focus models from 2013 to 2016 equipped with a 1.0-litre engine and a 6-speed manual transmission, as well as 2013-2015 Fusion models equipped with a 1.6L engine and a 6-speed manual transmission. In this case the reason for the recall is a potential clutch plate fracture, which could cause a fire.
Far fewer of these manual-transmission models were produced, so the recall only affects 5,872 vehicles in North America, 515 of them in Canada.