The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched a safety investigation that affects an estimated 360,000 Ford Taurus sedans. The inquiry covers the 2005 and 2006 model years and involves 14 complaints about the Ford Taurus' throttle.
Investigators believe the throttle is getting stuck in an open position, making it difficult for drivers to control the vehicle. Though there have been no injuries or crashes, MSNBC reports that at least two drivers were forced to run a red light when their vehicles would not slow down or stop. Others have reported that the Ford Taurus' throttle issue makes it so difficult to stop the car with brakes, that they were forced to shift into neutral or turn off their engines.
Preliminary reports suggest that the issue may actually be a defect in the car's cruise control function. The cruise control cable may become detached, holding the throttle open.
Thus far, there is no recall and the investigation is limited to only the Ford Taurus model. However, there is some indication that NHTSA officials will also look at the Mercury Sable, according to USA Today. The Sable, also manufactured by Ford, is said to be nearly identical except for a few cosmetic differences. The investigation may also end up including vehicles outside the Ford line if they use the same part.
More information will be released as the NHTSA proceeds with the Ford Taurus throttle investigation. If you have any questions or complaints about the vehicle, you can contact the agency by phone or through its website.
- Related Resources:
- Possible Unintended-Acceleration Hazard Prompts Investigation of the Ford Taurus (New York Times)
- Car Defects and Recalls Basics (FindLaw)
- Dept. of Transportation Report on the Toyota Unintended Acceleration Investigation (FindLaw's Courtside)