Laguna Hills, CA – March 14, 2019 – Ford Motor Company is recalling certain 2019 Ranger vehicles with 10-speed automatic transmissions. In some of these vehicles, the transmission shift lever can be moved from the “Park” position without the key in the starter and without depressing the brake pedal, raising concerns about theft protection as well as safety. As many as 2,992 vehicles could be affected.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Safety Recall Report on this issue, the brake transmission shift interlock override plunger may be depressed, allowing the shifter to move from the “park” position without the key in the starting system and without depressing the brake pedal. As a result, if the vehicle is able to be shifted out of Park without the brake applied, it may unexpectedly move, increasing the risk of injury or crash.
Timeline of Events
The issue first came to Ford’s attention Jan. 10, 2019. The report of a 2019 Ranger shifting out of park without a key in the ignition or a depressed brake pedal was reviewed by Ford’s Critical Concerns Review Group, following a Jan. 8 vehicle audit at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant.
Ford’s engineering investigation revealed that the PRNDL bezel wiring on the vehicle interfered with the BTSI plunger. As the result of a subsequent inspection of 985 vehicles at the Michigan Plant, the problem was also found in a second vehicle. Over 100 more vehicles at a different Ford facility were also inspected, with no additional evidence of the issue.
Ford then began a review of the vehicle assembly process and post-assembly vehicle update procedures, uncovering three more vehicles at the Michigan Assembly Plant with this condition, which were repaired.
A dealer warranty claim regarding a shifter interlock actuator repair was reported Jan. 21, with the Ford Field Review Committee reviewing the concern and approving a field action. Ford has not yet received any reports of accident or injury as a result of this issue.
The recall was announced February 22 when Ford began notifying owners by mail. Owners are instructed to take their vehicle to a Ford or Lincoln dealer to verify proper shifter interlock functionality. If a vehicle fails either inspection, dealers will inspect for wiring interference with the interlock switch plunger and relocate the wiring as needed. There will be no charge for this service.
Owners may contact Ford customer service at 1-866-436-7332. Ford’s number for this recall is 19C02. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 19V071000.