The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened a probe into the way Ford handled a recall of nearly 200,000 pickup trucks linked to a defective exhaust gas temperature sensor.
The "query" involves the 2011-'12 Ford F-250, F-350, F-450 pickups equipped with the 6.7-liter turbodiesel engines. An exhaust-gas sensor located behind the diesel particulate filter in the truck's exhaust system could malfunction while a vehicle is being used, according to an NHTSA statement.
If a malfunction occurs, it could result in "power reduction (limp) model and a vehicle-commanded engine shutdown (engine stall) with no immediate restart capability," NHTSA said in its problem summary.
So far, 30 consumer complaints have been linked to this issue.
"These complaints cover vehicles both outside and within the scope of the subject recall," NHTSA said about the probe. "Some complaints allege multiple (exhaust gas temperature) sensor malfunctions, with some sensors having been replaced more than once. Some complaints allege the recall remedy is not long lasting or that other sensor locations subsequently malfunctioned, resulting in the shutdown condition."
"Multiple complainants report their vehicle becoming disabled in the roadway as a result of the subject condition," NHTSA added.
One complaint was made by an owner of a 2011 Ford F-250, who told safety regulators that a warning light indicating "Stop Safety Now" came on while he was driving his truck. After turning off the truck, it wouldn't start again and had to be towed to a local dealership.
"The dealership said it was a faulty sensor," the consumer wrote. "I have spent more than $300 fixing sensors that should not fail."
For now NHTSA is just looking into the matter, but that doesn't mean it won't call for a recall sometime soon.
For now, all owners of these vehicles have to wait until federal safety regulators finish conducting their investigation before taking action. If you are experiencing an issue with your truck however, contact your Ford dealer today to avoid any further issues.