Ford Bronco, Ranger recalled after wheel falls off due to loose lug nut
Ford has announced a recall of the 2023 Bronco and Ranger models in the US after detecting a potential issue with the lug nuts on the left-side wheels of either car. According to the details submitted to the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the lug nut was not properly tightened on a select batch of the 2023 Ford Bronco and Ford Ranger, which could lead to wheel detachment, leading to a road hazard or risk of injury.
Ford says 1,434 units of the 2023 Bronco and Ranger have been recalled, out of which the company estimates that about 19 per cent of vehicles will be defective. The issue was identified at Ford’s Michigan manufacturing facility where the automated tool used to torque the wheel on the left side of the vehicle broke down between February 9-13, 2023. The machine was replaced with a manual system during the downtime, which led to the lug nuts not being torqued according to the specifications on the left front and rear wheels.
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As a result, the loose nuts can cause vibrations and noise when driving, and eventually come off. This is a massive safety risk and Ford even had an incident wherein the tyre detached itself and hit another vehicle. The automaker reported no injuries as a result of the incident.
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Ford says that 992 Broncos and 442 Rangers have been affected by the recall. The automaker has reached out to customers and has asked them to bring their vehicles to the nearest authorised service centre or dealership to fix the issue. At the same time, owners who can correctly fix the lug nuts themselves have been sent the instruction manual to do so.
Meanwhile, Ford is advising Bronco and Ranger owners affected by the recall to avoid driving the car. All cars under the recall will have to be inspected by a dealer for torque validation, component damage, and repair completion, which will then be informed to the NHTSA.
In the meantime, instructions will be provided to owners for torque verification should they have the desire and capability to do so. However, Ford recommends that all affected vehicles must be inspected by a dealer for torque validation, component damage, and repair completion.