Pretoria - Ford SA is recalling vehicles fitted with manual gearboxes that could be at risk of a 'clutch pressure plate fracture'. Models affected include the Focus, Kuga and its vans.
According to Ford SA: "Ford Motor Company has learned that certain derivatives of Focus, Kuga and Transit Connect and Tourneo Connect vehicles with manual gearboxes could suffer a clutch pressure plate fracture, with the risk of fire. Safety is always a top priority and we are acting quickly to address this issue.
"As a precautionary measure, we are directing affected customers to schedule an appointment with their preferred dealer in order to have a diagnostic test completed. Should there be any evidence of clutch slippage the clutch assembly will be replaced. Any action carried out on affected vehicles will be free of charge.
What is Ford doing to prevent the problem?
The automaker said: "Ford is also working on a software calibration remedy that will detect excessive clutch slippage and warn the driver to take the vehicle to their preferred Ford dealer. When the software becomes available, Ford will notify customers. The software is anticipated to be available beginning in May 2018."
Are vehicles affected safe to drive?
Ford SA says: "We want to reassure our customers that the affected vehicles remain safe to drive.
"We remain committed to providing our customers with safe and high quality vehicles, addressing potential issues and responding quickly for our customers."
Customers can contact their nearest dealer or Ford Customer Service directly at 0860 011 022 or CRC3@ford.com.