The company issued two recalls, one affecting 915,000 Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner small SUVs and one affecting 196,000 Ford Explorer SUVs. The problems are slightly different, but both could result in a loss of electric power steering while driving, increasing the risk of a crash.
The Escape and Mariner recall involves a torque sensor within the steering column. Ford recommends one of three fixes: replacing the sensor, updating software or replacing the steering column. The recall affects model year 2008 through 2011 vehicles built between August 18, 2006 and September 11, 2010 in Kansas City.
The Explorer recall addresses a potentially intermittent electrical connection in the steering gear, which will be fixed either with a software update or new steering gear. It affects model year 2011 through 2013 vehicles built between May 17, 2010 and February 28, 2012 in Chicago.
Ford also issued two additional recalls Thursday:
— The license plate lamp in some model year 2010 through 2014 Ford Taurus sedans may corrode, possibly leading to a short circuit, heat, and a fire. The cars were made between November 24, 2008 and February 28, 2014 in Chicago and sold in regions where salt is used to remove ice from roads.
— The all-weather floor mats purchased at Ford or Lincoln dealers for use in some model year 2006 through 2011 Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan, Lincoln Zephyr and MKZ sedans may come in contact with the accelerator pedal if improperly installed.