A car recall usually happens when a component of the vehicle is malfunctioning and causing safety concerns for the passengers and drivers. There have been some notable exceptions to this, such as the spider infestation in Toyota Camrys a few years ago. Some recalls have even landed automakers in massive legal trouble, with victims seeking more than $600 million in damages.
Despite Ford’s optimism for the future in a time of uncertainty for the auto industry, it has had its fair share of problems lately. The company has already been experiencing some issues with its 2020 Explorer and Lincoln Aviator models due to assembly errors. This resulted in delayed shipments to dealerships. The latest recall concerning a faulty seat mechanism is expected to have affected multiple vehicles from Ford’s lineup.
Newest Ford recall
At least 500,000 vehicles have been recalled due to a missing pawl in the seats. The pawl is an essential component of the seatback. Without it, the driver would not be able to recline or adjust their seat properly. If a collision happens, the pawl is responsible for locking the seat in place, preventing more injury than necessary. The driver wouldn’t be restrained during a crash if the pawl stopped working, even if they were wearing their seat belt.
The vehicles affected include 2019-2020 Ford F-series Super Duty trucks, 2018-2020 Ford F-150 pickups, 2019-2020 Ford Expeditions, and 2018-2019 Ford Explorers. A few of the 2020 Explorers and Lincoln Aviators may have the defect as well. For those wondering if their car was affected, you can look up your vehicle by its VIN on Ford’s website.
How Ford wants to fix it
As of yet, no accidents or injuries have been reported, but Ford still has taken the recall very seriously. Customers affected by the faulty seat will have the option to have the seat structure replaced at no extra cost. If they are eligible for repairs, owners of these cars can have their seats repaired at the beginning of October.
Other recent Ford recalls
Ford has had to issue multiple recalls this year for other vehicles, the biggest of which concerned nearly a million vehicles over faulty Takata airbags. Another recall recently went out for 300,00 2017 Ford Explorers.
The issue was over seat frames that weren’t constructed properly, resulting in sharp edges between the center console and the front seat. No injuries were reported as a result of this defect, but Ford dealerships offered to place flocked tape over the area with the sharp edge of the seat for free.
Another recall was issued at the beginning of August over a defective seat belt. According to the statement from Ford, the strength of the belt was weakened due to strain on the safety belt anchor below the seat. If the belt could not hold the driver in place, they would be at more risk in the event of an accident.
This recall affected a little over 100,000 Lincoln MKZ and Ford Fusion models from 2015. Owners of the defective cars can have their dealership put a special coating on the seat belt’s cable to improve its functionality.
The month before that, nearly 60,000 Ford Focus vehicles were recalled due to a problem with the fuel tank. Issues with the fuel management system caused excessive gas usage in the affected cars.
What caused the issue?
Ford has not given an official reason for why the seats were missing such an important piece. Since most factories are using robots alongside humans to build automobiles, a widespread error could be caused by an error in the robot’s programming. A lack of attention on the engineer’s part could also be to blame. At least Ford has offered to fix the issues across all the recalled cars.