2013 Ford FiestaEnlarge Photo
Ford is conducting a voluntary safety recall of certain 2011 through 2013 model year Fiesta subcompact cars to fix a problem with the side airbag.
A notice posted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website indicates that an estimated 154,604 Fiestas in the United States may be affected by the recall. Affected vehicles were built at Ford’s Cuautitlan, Mexico plant from November 3, 2009 through September 21, 2012.
2011 Ford FiestaEnlarge Photo
The NHTSA bulletin says that the vehicles fail to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 208, “Occupant Crash Protection.” When the front passenger seat is empty, the passenger side curtain airbag will not deploy in the event of a side impact collision. The information on the suppression of the side curtain airbag is also not explained correctly in the Fiesta owner’s manual.
Documentation from Ford (PDF) says that the current airbag setup meets federal safety standards, “but the right rear seating position may not have coverage of the side air curtain in certain crashes.”
The automaker said that it is not aware of any reports of accidents or injuries attributed to this condition.
What Ford will do
Ford will notify owners of 2011-2013 Fiesta subcompact cars involved in the recall and dealers will reprogram the software so that it no longer suppresses the passenger side curtain airbag when the front passenger seat is empty. This will also be consistent with the description in the vehicle’s owner’s manual.
The Ford safety recall, No. 12C26, is expected to begin “shortly.” In the meantime, owners of 2011-2013 Ford Fiesta subcompacts with any questions or concerns may contact Ford at 1-866-436-7332.
Alternatively, owners of vehicles involved in the campaign may contact NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 or go to http://www.safercar.gov. Reference the NHTSA campaign ID No. 12V488000.