Losing power while driving is a scary experience, but nothing compared to your car catching fire while you’re on the move. These situations could become a reality for nearly 15,000 Ford Fusion plug-in hybrid (PHEV) owners. Sedans from the model years 2019 and 2020 are at risk of their cars not starting, losing power, and catching fire, leading Ford to recall these models.
Ford believes the issues are due to a problem with the battery energy control module (BECM). Excessive voltage and current flow to the BECM are thought to be the cause of the problem. The Fusion PHEV has a current interrupt device (CID), which is supposed to cut off an electrical current if it detects a battery fault. But Ford doesn’t know if the CID is activating.
Ford is advising owners of the affected models not to charge their batteries until they’ve brought their car in for a free recall repair.
According to Ford, "We’re instructing customers with 2019 and 2020 Ford Fusion Energi that have 30Ah plug-in hybrid cell batteries to not charge their vehicles. Until the remedy is available, lowering the battery’s state of charge will reduce the risk of power loss and fire around the vehicle’s battery control module, which is located in the trunk. We are committed to keeping customers informed as we work to resolve this issue."
The automaker is working on a fix and will send affected owners a notification via first-class mail by July 10th. Once the remedy is determined, Ford will send out a second letter.
So far, there have been no injuries related to the issue. But, according to documents from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Ford is aware of seven fires and 270 warranty claims related to this problem.
Non-hybrid and regular hybrid Fusion sedans are not included in the recall. Although manufacturers can make every effort to notify affected customers about recalls, it’s not always possible. So if you want to check if your car has an active recall, sometimes you need to do it yourself.