NHTSA investigating Ford's solution to May 2014 power steering recall

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating a complaint that Ford's response to a May 2014 recall of the 2008 to 2011 Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner doesn't quite go far enough to solve a troubling power-steering problem.

Roughly a year ago, Ford recalled nearly a million vehicles after it was found that a problem with the torque sensor's communication with the power steering control module could cut steering assistance for drivers. While manual steering would still be available, the problem was enough to ask drivers to report in to have the PSCM inspected, and if necessary, replaced (along with the torque sensor, or in dramatic cases, the entire steering column).

That would only happen, though, if trouble codes were being thrown. If there weren't any problems, dealers were told to simply update the PSCM's software so that any issues between it and the torque sensor would simply throw a visual and audio warning – power steering would still be maintained.

The petitioner claimed that following the recall work, he still experienced a problem with the torque sensor. According to NHTSA, a claim was made that Ford didn't go far enough in its solution to the problem, and that "the software update itself may in fact cause further issues with the affected vehicle's power steering, causing it to fail, and ultimately requiring replacement of the torque sensor or entire steering column."

The petition was filed in early February and is now officially being looked into by NHTSA.

Ford Escape Information

Ford Escape

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