Another day, another major auto manufacturer recalling hundreds of thousands of vehicles over serious defects that may lead to devastating accidents. This time, it is Ford Motor Co.s turn.
Ford is recalling some 250k Explorer sport utility vehicles whose driveshaft-half shafts may become disconnected. The company recently told federal regulators at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that the defect increases the risk of a crash.
“If the rear axle bolt breaks, the driveshaft/half shafts may become disconnected, resulting in loss of transmission torque to the rear wheels which is necessary to
hold the vehicle in park,” Ford said in a defect notice filed with NHTSA. “If the parking brake is not applied, the loss of the primary park torque will allow the vehicle to roll in park increasing the risk of crash and injury.”
The recall covers certain 2020-2022 Explorer SUVs, including some 2020-2021 Police Interceptor SUVs. Some 235 warranty claims have been filed stemming from the defect, according to an NHTSA letter.
Ford said it would alert the owners of recalled cars by early June. It is asking owners to bring their vehicles to a local dealer for inspection and repair, free of charge. Ford said it would also reimburse owners who have already incurred expenses related to the defect.
Sadly, Ford has significant experience with these kinds of recalls. The company and other major auto manufacturers call back millions of vehicles around the globe each year, often citing serious defects that increase the risk of accidents.
In April, the company recalled roughly 345,000 vehicles, citing the risk of fires stemming from oil leaks. A month earlier, Ford announced that it was calling back 18,000 sport utility vehicles at risk of engine fires if the cars are involved in crashes.
Similarly, the company said late last year it was recalling some 185,000 F-150 pickup trucks whose malfunctioning insulators could cause drivers to lose control or driving power. The company acknowledged, as in the other recalls, that the defect increased the risk of a crash.
The California Lemon Law Protects Golden State Car Owners
California car owners have some important rights and protections under the state’s lemon law. They do not necessarily have to wait for a recall to have defective vehicles fixed.
Officially known as the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, the lemon law requires carmakers to perform a full range of repairs on vehicles while they are under warranty. It also forces auto manufacturers to buy back (or replace, in certain circumstances) vehicles that they are not able or flat out refuse to fix. That includes compensating the owner for the vehicle’s purchase price, as well as other related fees and costs.
There is no specific number of repair requests or attempts that a person must make before the buyback or replacement requirement kicks in. An experienced California lemon law attorney can help you navigate the system and enforce your rights.
Speak with a California Lemon Law Attorney
If you have been stuck with a defective or malfunctioning vehicle, a California lemon law attorney at Bickel Sannipoli APC can help you fight back.