Feds open floormat-entrapment probe on 2010 Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan
UPDATED to correct spelling of Mercury Milan:
The federal government has opened an investigation into possible floormat gas-pedal entrapment in the 2010 Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan.
According to the filing at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration -- which already is using under-employed NASA scientists to find out why Toyota gas pedals have been sticking -- the agency "has received three complaints of accelerator pedals being trapped by unsecured 'all weather' floor mats in current production Model Year 2010 Ford Fusion vehicles."
You read that right: three complaints. That's an indication of how sensitive NHTSA is in the wake of the Toyota case to not listening to driver complaints and being in bed with the auto companies it regulates. It may not take a lot to get a government investigation of an automaker launched these days.
The investigation was opened Friday and after car research site Edmunds.com experienced floormat entrapment on one of its Fusions. (Note: A car research firm is not the first group you want noticing a problem that could lead to a recall.)
There are about 249,000 2010 Fusions and Milano in operation in the U.S., the report says.
Ford says the mats in question are accessory mats and they come with instructions meant to prevent such an occurrence. The automaker said it will cooperate with the NHTSA probe. It looks like it may be an issue of drivers placing the accessory mat over the standard mat instead of removing the standard one first.
Note: I mistakenly added an "o" to the name of the Mercury Milan in the original posting, and an alert reader pointed out my error, which is now fixed. Thanks.
June 1, 2010; 2:15 PM ET
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