According to the company, Ford Escapes with 2.0 and 2.5-liter engines are not included in the recall. At present, there are no reported injuries related to the defect; however the company is recalling the vehicles to ensure the safety of its customers and prevent possible accidents.
Ford Escape owners are advised to contact their dealers to replace the compartment fuel lines of their vehicles. They will receive a loaner vehicle from the dealership until the repair is completed, which takes less than an hour if the parts are available. The company assured consumers they would be able to resolve the problem within two weeks.
It is best for Ford Escape owners to have their compartment fuel lines checked and replaced by the dealership, even if they are not experiencing any problem. According to Ford, the defect is not visible when the engine is not running. There is a possibility that compartment fuel line will split and leak gas at anytime when driving.
The company’s dealers will stop delivering, or conducting demonstration drives of these vehicles, so that proper steps can be taken to remedy the issue at the dealership first.
In a statement, Ray Nevi, assistant director, Ford Automotive Safety Office, said that the company immediately took action to issue a voluntary safety recall after discovering the defect, to ensure the best interest of its consumers. According to him, "We have identified an issue, and are taking quick actions in the best interest of our customers. Our intensive investigation and testing have identified the area of concern, and we are moving as quickly as possible to repair vehicles for our customers. In the meantime, it is extremely important that affected customers not ignore this recall, and immediately contact their dealer."
On the other hand, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is currently investigating complaints from consumers, involving approximately 730,000 older models of Ford Escape, and Mazda Motor Corporation (TYO:7261)'s Tribute, with model years 2001 to 2004. The agency launched the investigation after receiving 99 complaints, involving 13 incidents of car crashes, 9 injuries, and a death due to alleged throttle control problems.
NHTSA is also investigating 1.4 million Toyota Motor Corporation (NYSE:TM) (TYO:7203) Camry and RAV4 small SUV's, due to door fires, and a fuel tank fire involving Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs.