Ford is recalling approximately 1.5 million Focus vehicles in the United States for a fuel system issue that may cause engine stalling.
The models covered by the recall are select 2012-2018 Focus models equipped with 2.0-liter GDI and 2.0-liter GTDI four-cylinder gasoline engines.
The reason is a malfunctioning canister purge valve that may become stuck in an open position. If that were to happen, Ford says that “an excessive vacuum in the fuel system could cause deformation of the vehicle’s plastic fuel tank.” The trouble is the car’s engine control computer may not detect the issue.
The only way owners can predict the problem is if they notice the fuel gauge fluctuating and showing inaccurate fuel levels or the indicator light malfunctioning. According to the automaker, this could lead to a stall while driving and/or “an inability to restart the vehicle, which can increase the risk of a crash.”
Affected vehicles include 2012-2018 Ford Focus 2.0-liter GDI models built at Michigan Assembly Plant before April 13, 2017, and 2.0-liter GTDI models built before February 2, 2018. There are some 1,463,389 vehicles in North America covered by the recall, 1,282,596 of which in the United States.
Ford says it is not aware of any accidents, injuries or fires as a result of this defect. As part of the recall, the automaker will implement two fixes. First, dealers will reprogram the powertrain control module with new software able to detect a malfunctioning canister purge valve. The software will also “prevent a potential excessive fuel vapor system vacuum condition from occurring.”
Then, dealers will inspect the canister purge valve, carbon canister, fuel tank and fuel delivery module and replace them if needed. All the fixes will be free of charge. Ford advises owners of Focus models covered by the recall to maintain at least a half tank of fuel until their car is fixed. The recall will commence on December 10.