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Ford Motors Recalls Millions of Cars, SUVs, and Truck Due to Defective Takata Airbags

March 15, 2021

The Ford Motor Company has issued two major safety recalls throughout North America.  The first recall will replace driver-side Takata airbags on over 2.6 million Ford SUVs, trucks, and cars in the United States, U.S. territories, Canada, and Mexico.

Ford's recall announcement follows the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) decision to deny Ford's petition to exempt numerous models from the Takata airbag recall.  The affected motor vehicles include:

  • 2006-2012 Ford Fusion, Lincoln Zephyr and MKZ sedans; 
  • 2007-2010 Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX SUVs; 
  • 2006-2011 Mercury Milan sedan; and 
  • 2007-2011 Ford Ranger pickup truck.

According to the recall, the affected motor vehicles may have driver-side front airbag inflators that contain a chemical called calcium sulfate desiccant.  Calcium sulfate desiccant can begin to degrade after lengthy exposure to high humidity.  This may cause the airbag inflator to rupture when the airbag is deployed and could cause serious injury or death.  Ford claims that the company has not been made aware of any such ruptures in their vehicles.  Ford reports that unlike the previously recalled Takata airbags, their driver-side airbags have a moisture-absorbing desiccant and function differently.

The Ford Motor Company had previously argued that this airbag safety recall is not justified for its driver-side airbag.  Ford filed a petition with NHTSA back in August 2017 to remove some of the recall list models.  However,  NHTSA denied Ford's appeal in January 2021; therefore, the automaker must proceed with the 21S12 recall. 

Ford dealerships will replace the driver-side airbag module or airbag inflator as needed.  Ford is sending out owner notifications in the first week of April.

The defective Takata inflators are being recalled by nearly all of the largest auto manufacturers, including Ford, Toyota TM, Honda HMC, and General Motors GM, and others.  There have been 25 reported deaths linked to the defective Takata airbag inflators.

Ford's second safety recall affects certain tires manufactured by Continental Tire of America.  The affected tires can fail by creating a "framework break in the sidewall leading to a sudden air loss."  This problem may also "lead to a belt edge separation, which could lead to a partial or complete tread or belt loss."

This defect may increase the risk of being in an accident or having a sudden flat tire.  This Continental tire recall affects almost 20,000 Ford vehicles sold in the United States, U.S. territories, Canada, and Mexico.  The  Continental tire recall affects some 2018-2020 Ford F-250 and F-350 Super Duty pickup truck models, some 2018 Ford F-150 pickup truck models, and certain 2019 Ford Escape models.  Ford's recall reference number is 21S10.  Affected owners will receive notifications starting on March 29, 2021.  Owners receive a free tire inspection and free tire replacement if their tires match the recall tire list that Continental Tire of America has provided.

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Category: Auto Accidents

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