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Ford recalls 1.38 million vehicles for loose steering wheel bolts

Ford recalls 1.38 million vehicles for loose steering wheel bolts

Ford Motor Co. issued a safety recall Wednesday covering almost 1.4 million cars in North America over the possibility steering wheels could detach from the steering column.

Models covered in the recall include the 2014-2018 Ford Fusion and the 2014-2018 Lincoln MKZ.

At least one person has been hurt following two accidents as a result of the defect, Ford said in a statement on Wednesday.

It explained the fault further, saying the bolt of the steering wheels in affected vehicles may not maintain torque, which could loosen the bolt over time.

The affected vehicles are 2013-16 Ford Focus cars with a 1.0-liter Fox GTDI engine and B6 manual transmission, and 2013-15 Ford Fusion cars with a 1.6-liter GTDI engine and B6 manual transmission. It issued a separate recall for about 150 Buick Encore SUVs in 2013 over the same issue.

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The second largest U.S. automaker said the recall covers 2014 through 2018 model year Ford Fusion cars and 2014-2018 Lincoln MKZ vehicles built at plants in MI and Mexico. Dealers will replace existing bolts with a longer bolt that has a "more robust thread engagement and larger nylon patch placed properly for proper torque retention".

Ford isn't the only manufacturer to issue a recall for steering wheels coming off.

The recall involves approximately 5,872 vehicles in North America with 5,357 in the United States and 515 in Canada. Fusions will be updated with a new clutch assembly at no cost to customers.

To check if your vehicle is part of the recall go to the NHTSA website and enter your VIN. A crack in the clutch pressure plate could cause flammable transmission fluid to leak, but Ford says it isn't aware of any fires or injuries stemming from the issue. Via Ford's press release, the safety recall has occurred due to the risk of a possible clutch plate fracture.

Despite the sheer number of vehicles involved in the recall, Ford says that the number of reported incidents caused by the issue is actually fairly low.


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