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Ford Under Fire as Recent Issues Surface

Jack Thurmond
The Ford Motor Company has recently garnered the attention of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration with issues surrounding its F-150 truck and its Bronco SUV.

The Ford Motor Company has been at the center of recent investigations, with several of its best-selling vehicles facing late recalls. These problems, if not addressed quickly, could be dangerous to company consumers. 

Ever since being established by founder Henry Ford in 1903, The Ford Motor Company has been one of the most notable brands in the American Automotive Industry. The mechanical giant’s dominance has been visible from the creation of its Model-T series in 1908, all the way to its current fleet consisting of American staples such as the Bronco SUV and the iconic F-Series truck. 

The vehicular titan has recently hit roadblocks, however, with two of its most recognizable units falling under investigation. The company reported issues involving 540,000 of its F-150’s and 43,000 of its Bronco’s each within weeks of each other. 

In late March, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened an examination for the F-150’s 2014 model year. This came following a rise in complaints that the trucks could downshift without warning. 

David McMurry, chair of Lanier Technical College’s Automotive Technology program, says the problem could possess several risks if not addressed. 

“Not fixing [the issue] could lead to bodily harm due to whiplash, loss of control or a damaged engine due to excessive rpm on the downshift.” -David McMurry, Lanier Tech Automotive Tech Program Chair 

This isn’t the first time an F-150 variant has dealt with this issue. In 2016, the 2011-2012 models were recalled for the same problem, and in 2019, the 2013 edition was added to the callback. The ongoing investigation is to determine if the 2014 trucks need to be added as well. 

Blain Latty, service manager for Greene Ford in Gainesville Georgia, says the recall was broken into two parts, the 19S07 and 19N01 sides. The first of which, being the main recall, involved reprogramming the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) that controls the trucks transmission shifting abilities.  

19S07 was only performed if there wasn’t a check engine light or wrench light on. Since this is a safety recall, there is no expiration date for this to be performed.” -Blain Latty, Greene Ford Service Manager 

He says the 19N01 side of the document wasn’t a safety recall, but rather a warranty extension on the truck’s molded led frame. It only applied if there was a check engine light or wrench light on, and if the frame had one of four different codes. 

Meanwhile, the NHTSA recently announced another probe into the brand’s Bronco and Escape SUVs. They are looking into issues involving fuel leaks onto hot surfaces that could lead to fires under the hood. 

According to a March 8 report, Ford’s remedy for the issue includes equipping these vehicles with updated engine control software to detect fuel pressure drops and alert consumers to any needed service. Furthermore, a drain tube will be added to allow fuel to flow away from flammable surfaces. 

Latty says customers can always bring their vehicle to the dealership whether there is a valid recall or not. 


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Jack Thurmond
Jack Thurmond, Staff Writer
Hello there! My name is Jack Thurmond. This is my third year at the University of North Georgia, and I am studying communications to become a sports journalist. I joined the Vanguard because it gives me the window to experience things I typically would not get to.
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