The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration received no fewer than 95 complaints from EcoSport owners, all of them over sudden engine failure caused by oil pressure loss. Certain owners reported a low engine oil pressure warning light preceding a reduction or the complete loss of motive power.
Such a failure automatically increases the risk of a crash, and the failure's nature also requires engine replacement. Given these circumstances, the Office of Defects Investigation has opened a preliminary evaluation into the 2018 through 2021 model year EcoSport. If the federal watchdog forces the Ford Motor Company to recall said vehicles, the automaker will have to fix 241,014 vehicles.
The remedy is a mystery at press time, yet Ford is certain to lose plenty of money if said vehicles receive new oil pumps. Add some replacement engines to the mix, and you'll understand how much this recall could eat into Ford's bottom line.
ODI has also provided a list of reference numbers for the 95 consumer-submitted complaints. 11539163 was filed with the NHTSA on August 17, 2023. The owner experienced an oil pump failure at 90,000 miles (144,841 kilometers) in a car that's not even two years old. The dealer recommended a replacement engine at a cost in excess of $6,500.
Complaint 11538993 was filed on August 16, alleging oil pump failure at 70 miles per hour (113 kilometers per hour) while driving. Said EcoSport, namely a 2018 model, had only 71,000 miles (114,263 kilometers) when the failure occurred.
2022 was the final year of the EcoSport in the US, and 2022 models feature a five-year powertrain warranty. The problem is, the automaker will honor said warranty if the subcompact crossover has fewer than 60,000 miles (96,561 kilometers) on the clock. The consumer who filed complaint 11532558 experienced engine failure at 61,000 miles (98,170 kilometers), then again at 62,000 miles (99,779 kilometers) with the replacement engine.
What is the Office of Defects Investigation actually investigating, though? Like all other preliminary evaluations, PE 23015 was opened to determine the scope and severity of the failure, and to assess the safety-related concerns of an engine failure.
With a bit of luck, the federal agency's ODI will hopefully wrap things up by the end of 2023.