The Ford Fusion and the Lincoln MKZ mid-size sedans are affected
The front brake lines can rupture or leak prematurely
At least 50 complaints and one crash are attributed to this problem
According to the agency, the problem comes from the front brake lines, which can wear out due to the repeated movements of the suspension.
Once they have worn down to a certain level, those brake lines can leak or rupture suddenly, which will reduce the effectiveness of the brakes.
This can increase the braking distance and the travel of the brake pedal, but it shouldn’t result in a complete failure of the brakes since half of the system should still have enough fluid.
What is even more concerning is that this failure can occur without prior warning, according to the NHTSA, which can startle drivers and lead to an accident.
Since the investigation is not over yet, the agency hasn’t requested a safety recall. If it does, the number of vehicles that will need to receive new front brake lines could approach 1,7 million.
Another possibility is that Ford could decide to perform a voluntary recall by asking owners to bring their cars in without being forced by the NHTSA.
In that case, the automaker replaced both the front brake lines and performed a brake system bleed to make sure no air entered the system since this could also cause poor braking performance and a malfunction of the ABS system.