Daily Auto News NHTSA Investigates Ford and Mercury for Unintended Acceleration

Daily Auto News

Ford is cooperating with an NHTSA investigation into reported cases of unintended acceleration in the 2010 Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan. As was the case in one of the recent high-profile Toyota recalls, it is believed that floor mats are what’s causing the problem.

Thus far, the NHTSA has only received three complaints about floor mats hindering proper operation of the gas pedal in the Fusion and Milan. However, it is not taking any chances.

Kicking Tires explains: “Typically, three complaints filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration won’t spark an investigation. … The investigation would seem unusual if weren’t for Toyota’s massive recall for a similar problem late last year.”

Interestingly, one of those complaints came from Edmunds’ Director of Vehicle Testing, Dan Edmunds, who experienced a frightening incident of unintended acceleration after the gas pedal in his test-model 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid jammed due to the thickness of its stacked floor mats.

While the investigation is still pending, the NHTSA has “warned owners of 2010 Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan vehicles not to place unsecured floor mats — made by Ford or anyone else — on top of the standard, carpeted floor mat in the driver’s side foot well,” reports the Detroit News. Stacking unsecure floor mats may interfere with the gas pedal, causing it to stick in a downward position.

“Ford spokesman Said Deep said the automaker warns customers on the mats themselves and in instructions that come with them to remove the regular floor mat before using the thicker, rubber mat,” writes the Detroit Free Press. “The all-weather mat has two prominent holes for retaining hooks.”

Dan Edmunds offers this piece of advice: “Don’t assume everything is OK because a) you don’t drive a Toyota/Lexus product or b) because everything looked OK in a random curbside test. The real world contains far more variables and conditions than you or I can account for.”

According to Autoblog, “A grand total of 249,301 cars are being investigated over this potential problem with Ford’s all-weather floor mats” — which is a drop in the bucket compared to Toyota’s multi-million vehicle recall for similar problems.

To date, no accidents or injuries have been reported due to unintended acceleration in either the 2010 Ford Fusion or Mercury Milan.

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