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NHTSA Defect Investigations for the 2010 Ford Escape Hybrid

The Office of Defects Investigations (ODI) is an office within the NHTSA which investigates serious safety problems in the design, construction or performance of vehicles. The NHTSA is authorized to order manufacturers to recall and repair vehicles, if the ODI finds a safety issue. NHTSA investigations for the 2010 Ford Escape Hybrid, both ongoing and closed, are listed below:

  1. INVESTIGATION: Electronic Throttle Body Malfunction

    NHTSA Defect Investigation #DP12006

    • Status:
      CLOSED
    • Date Opened: October 02, 2012
    • Date Closed: February 21, 2013
    • Recall: No recall issued

    Component(s): Engine

    Summary: In a letter dated August 30, 2012, The North Carolina Consumers Council (NCCC) petitioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to initiate a defect investigation of alleged electronic throttle body failures resulting in engine stall or surge while driving in model year (MY) 2005 through 2012 Ford Escape vehicles. On October 2, 2012 the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) opened a Defect Petition DP12-006 to evaluate whether to grant or deny the petition. The petition is hereby granted on certain model years. The NCCC letter cites two complaints of stall while driving in MY 2009 Ford Escape vehicles that were diagnosed as failed throttle bodies with diagnostic trouble codes (DTC) P2111, Throttle Body Stuck Open, and P2112, Throttle Body Stuck Closed. The petitioner indicates that the owners of both vehicles reported experiencing repeated incidents of stalling and engine surging. According to Ford, Escape non-hybrid vehicles are equipped with Electronic Throttle Body (ETB) assemblies beginning with MY 2009. Vehicles manufactured between June 22, 2009 and October 15, 2009 may contain contaminated printed circuit boards (PCB) with plating variations. Plating variations could lead to a lack of continuity in the throttle position sensor circuit where P2111 and/or other DTCs would be generated and stored. Ford and its electronic throttle body supplier, Delphi, modified the PCB manufacturing process and issued a technical service bulletin (TSB) 09-23-5. Vehicles produced after October 15, 2009 incorporated ETBs manufactured with a PCB process that resolved this condition. ODI's analysis identified a total of 123 unique reports indicating allegations of reduced motive power or vehicle stall. Depending on the condition of throttle control system malfunction, a driver may experience varying levels of reduced engine performance associated with three limp home modes. In two limp modes, reduced engine performance may maintain vehicle speeds above 20mph while the third is a limited limp home mode with engine speeds limited to approximately 900 RPM. Allegations of stall appear to be related to the limited limp home mode. Vehicles are not likely to unexpectedly stall as a result of this condition, but drivers may characterize the reduced functionality as a stall, even though their vehicle may still has motive capability. Allegations of vehicle surge appear to be related to limp home mode operation. Complaints alleging surge are most likely related to engine RPM fluctuations at low vehicle speeds or idle as the control system engages to prevent engine stall. In limited limp mode, rough-idle conditions may exist while the control system attempts to modulate engine RPMs once the vehicle reaches a reduced speed to maintain approximately 900 RPM. Separately, ODI received 59 complaints alleging incidents of engine stall while driving in model year (MY) 2010-2011 Ford Fusion vehicles. Approximately 60 percent (36) of the incidents occurred at speeds of 40 miles per hour or more. Eighty percent of complaints (47) were received beginning March 2012 and 14 complaints reported that the throttle body was replaced or DTCs associated with limp home modes. Additionally, Ford issued TSB 10-21-6 addressing DTCs associated with idle speed drops and limited limp home mode. The petition is granted on certain model years.Preliminary Evaluation PE13-003 has been opened to assess the scope, frequency and potential safety consequences associated with the alleged defect.See full copy of the closing resume for this defect petition for list of the VOQs associated with the defect petition analysis.

  2. INVESTIGATION: Loss of power steering while driving

    NHTSA Defect Investigation #DP15001

    • Status:
      CLOSED
    • Date Opened: April 01, 2015
    • Date Closed: June 14, 2018
    • Recall: No recall issued

    Component(s): Steering:Electric Power Assist System

    Summary: On May 27, 2014, amended June 2, 2014, Ford Motor Company (Ford) submitted a Defect Information Report (DIR) to NHTSA describing a safety defect that may result in a sudden loss of power steering assist while driving in approximately 746,067 model year (MY) 2008 through 2011 Ford Escape vehicles equipped with electric power assisted steering (NHTSA 14V-284, Ford 14S05). Ford's DIR described the defect condition as "a poor signal to noise ratio [SNR] in the torque sensor" within the Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS) system [which] "does not allow the PSCM to determine the driver's steering input." When the system detects this fault condition, it transitions the EPAS system to the fail-safe/manual steering mode.Ford's DIR indicates that loss of power steering assist while driving would require higher steering effort at lower vehicle speeds, which may result in an increased risk of a crash.Ford's remedy instructs dealers to check the Power Steering Control Module (PSCM) for Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) to determine the proper repair procedure. If no DTCs are present, dealers are to update the PSCM and instrument cluster module software. The updated PSCM software changes the torque sensor fault strategy so that the SNR condition does not result in a loss of power steering assist while driving.In addition, audible and visual warnings are provided for torque sensor faults.If DTCs indicating faults in the torque sensor, PSCM or Power Steering Motor (motor) are present in the initial recall inspection, the dealer performs the following repairs: 1) replaces the torque sensor for torque sensor faults (DTC B2278); or 2) replaces the steering column for faults related to the PSCM (DTC B1342) or motor (DTC B2277).Continued in attachment pages

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