(the 2017 Ford Explorer, credit: Ford Motor Company)
What started as varied complaints on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration site has snowballed into an ever expanding probe into Ford's 2011-2017 Explorer model (F), as consumers report dangerous exhaust fumes being present in the passenger cabin.
The complaints first surfaced on the NHTSA vehicle page for the model, with reports claiming that when the air conditioning is on, the vehicle's exhaust gets circulated back into the cabin of the car. Some consumers even went as far as using carbon monoxide detectors to test the levels, as others say they've seen the problem in multiple models with little word from Ford as to why. Elevated levels of carbon monoxide can make you sick, cause you to lose conciousness (which leads to accidents when driving), or kill you with prolonged exposure.
The NHTSA is now expanding the probe to over 1.3MN Explorers as they conduct an "engineering analysis". Over 2,700 complaints, 3 accidents, and 41 injurires have already been reported. Injuries range from loss of consciousness, headaches, crash-related injuries, and up to one carbon monoxide-related exposure injury.
As per the NHTSA page, Ford Explorer models from 2011-2017 and the Ford Police Intercept models from 2016-2017 are currently under an open investigation. The investigation also cites that consumers are concerned with how Ford has been responding to these complaints, and have "raised concerns" over the Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs) the company has put out and their effectiveness.
So far, Ford has only stated it will pay to repair all police vehicles with the issue, but denies that any elevated carbon monoxide levels have been found in the standard model.
You can take a look at the NHTSA report summary here as the investigation continues.
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