Ford Motor Company has announced a recall impacting nearly 190,000 Mustang models due to a brake fluid sensor issue that may fail to warn drivers about low levels of brake fluid. This recall covers Mustangs from the 2020-2023 model years and aims to address non-compliance with the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. No accidents or injuries have been reported, but the concern over potential brake performance issues has led to this precautionary measure.
Details of the Defect
The problem stems from the vehicle’s Body Control Module (BCM), which was incorrectly configured to seek a message from the brake fluid level sensor via the Controller Area Network (CAN). However, in the affected vehicles, the brake fluid sensor is directly wired to the BCM, leading to a failure to activate the visual low brake fluid level indicator. The absence of this critical warning could raise the risk of a crash if the driver continues unaware of the diminishing brake fluid.
Ford’s Response and Actions
After the issue was first flagged by Ford’s customer service division in South Korea in late August 2023, Ford initiated an investigation that confirmed the problem was isolated to models produced between February 28, 2019, and April 5, 2023. It has been clarified that the configuration issue has not been passed onto the forthcoming 2024 model.
Implications for Owners
- Number of Vehicles Affected: The recall affects approximately 187,922 vehicles that fall short of the safety requirements regarding light vehicle brake systems.
- Recall Commencement: Ford has notified dealers as of October 30 and is set to begin sending owner notification letters by mail starting December 4, 2023.
- Owner Reimbursement: Ford has pledged to reimburse owners who have incurred costs fixing the issue before the recall was announced.
- Dealer Instructions: Ford and Lincoln dealers are instructed to perform a software update on the affected models free of charge to correct the BCM configuration issue.
Checking for Recalls
Owners of the affected Mustang models can verify if their vehicle is included in the recall by visiting the NHTSA website. Here, they can find information on all open recalls after entering their car’s specific details. Ford has also provided a dedicated recall number, 23C35, for owners to use when contacting Ford for further information.
Additional Information and Ford’s Market
While the current recall is a significant event for Ford, it is crucial to note that the automotive giant manufactures a broad range of vehicles, including pickups and SUVs, with a market capitalization of around $42.27 billion as reported recently. Despite this setback, Ford’s comprehensive approach to handling the recall demonstrates its commitment to safety and customer service.
No Impact on Unrelated Tendencies
The recall, focused on safety, does not address other behavioral issues sometimes linked to Mustang owners, specifically their driving habits at car shows. Ford’s main priority with the recall is purely to ensure the compliance and safety of their vehicles on the road.
Customer Service and Safety Compliance
As a leader in the automotive industry, Ford’s swift action in the face of potential safety risks reaffirms its position on prioritizing customer safety and adherence to federal regulations. By offering a cost-free software update and reimbursement for previous out-of-pocket expenses, Ford is taking essential steps to maintain trust and ensure the well-being of their consumers.
This recall is a significant event for both Ford and Mustang owners and reflects the continuous monitoring and quick response necessary within the automotive industry. Owners are urged to take immediate action if their vehicle is among those recalled to prevent any possible incidents related to the identified brake fluid issue.
Vehicle recalls are not uncommon in the auto industry, and Ford is not alone in its recent efforts to maintain high safety standards. In an increasingly complex automotive landscape, where technology plays a significant role in vehicle operations, such recalls underscore the importance of proactive vehicle monitoring and customer communication.