Ford Motor Company has issued a vehicle defect recall for 2020 Explorer and Lincoln Aviator SUVs noting that the vehicles may be missing a part that keeps the car from moving while parked increasing the risk of a crash. According to a news report in the Detroit Free Press, the company said in a statement that the vehicles might be missing the manual park release cover, which is not a minor issue.
Serious Safety Issue
Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards require that the manual park release cover be in place and only be removable with a tool. If the cover is not installed, the manual park release lever may be inadvertently activated, resulting in unintended vehicle movement if the electronic park brake is not applied. Also, the instrument cluster of the affected vehicles may be in factory mode, which disables warning alerts and chimes, and does not display the gear positions and which gear is selected.
Federal safety regulations require the gear positions and selected gear to be displayed whenever the shifter is not in park. Ford said it is aware of one report of an accident during vehicle transport within the production process. The incident reportedly did not result in injuries but in vehicle damage. This recall affects about 14,000 vehicles. Ford has assured that the majority of these vehicles are at dealerships and the issue will be repaired before they get to customers.
The affected vehicles include 2020 Ford Explorers built from March 27 to July 24 and 2020 Lincoln Aviator vehicles built from April 10 to July 24. When the recall begins, Ford dealers will inspect the vehicle for the manual park release cover and install one if necessary. Dealers will also look into whether the instrument cluster is out of factory mode and clear any diagnostic codes.
Auto Defects Raise Concerns
Safety advocates say this recall raises questions about Ford’s quality control process especially when brand new, high-end vehicles are being released from the factory with the “park” feature not working or where the driver can’t even determine the gear the vehicle is in. These are, no doubt, glaring violations of federal safety regulations.
Auto defects could arise from manufacturing issues or as a result poor design that could cause serious safety issues. Unsafe vehicles put consumers in serious danger. Vehicles that could roll away or don’t stay in proper gear can put vehicle occupants and others outside such as pedestrians and bicycles in grave danger.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a defective auto, you may be able to seek compensation from the automaker by filing an auto product liability lawsuit. An experienced auto defect lawyer will be able to help you seek maximum compensation for the injuries, damages and losses you have sustained.