Without issuing a true recall, the No.2 US automaker decided to ask its dealers to refrain from test-driving and selling some C-Max and Focus models.
The cars, manufactured during a certain week this month, have a potential issue with the steering gear assembly, says a notice sent to dealers. A Ford spokesperson added further details, saying that none of the affected vehicles were in customer possession and only 32 units were actually on dealer lots.
“This condition can result in deformation and degradation of the remaining ball bearings, which can lead to impaired steering, including the loss of steering control, increasing the risk of a crash,” Ford said in a statement.
The company acknowledged the problem and said that 616 vehicles potentially affected by the issue are now in transit to dealers – 502 within the United States, 108 are going to Canada and six to US federalized territories. According to Ford, certain C-Max and Focus models manufactured during the Aug. 8-15 assembly week could lack the necessary amount of ball bearings in the steering gear assembly. All the vehicles have been built at the Michigan Assembly Plant outside of Detroit. The notice stipulates the dealers must replace the steering gear directly, before the cars can be sold to customers.