It would seem that Toyota isn't the only automaker with braking issues on its hybrid vehicles, as Ford has reportedly issued a Technical Service Bulletin outlining a software update for its 2010 Fusion Hybrid and Mercury Milan Hybrid sedans. The problem was experienced and reported by Consumer Reports a little while back; here's their explanation of what happened:
That doesn't sound very good, eh? As it turns out, Ford was aware of the potential problem. Says Ford, "The software threshold to transition from regenerative brakes to conventional brakes can cause the system to transition to conventional brakes unnecessarily." Fortunately, Ford claims that, while drivers "may initially perceive the condition as loss of brakes... the vehicle has full braking capability. When this occurs, our system maintains full conventional brakes and full ABS function."As one of our senior engineers slowed for a stop sign at the turnoff to our test facility in East Haddam, Connecticut, the brake pedal went unexpectedly further down than normal but the car barely slowed. He zoomed through the turn, with brake-system warning lights illuminated on the dash. The car more or less coasted to a stop, with what our engineer described as minimal brake feel.
After switching off the engine and then restarting it, everything returned to normal – no warning lights and full braking capability.
In an effort to resolve the issue in a timely manner, Ford has initiated a repair program and will notify all known owners by mail starting in early February 2010. Anyone who owns a Fusion or Milan Hybrid made on or before October 17, 2009 can see their dealer regarding Ford's "Customer Satisfaction Program 10B13." Click past the break for a video explaining the issue and Ford's fix.
[Source: Consumer Reports]