WASHINGTON (Sept. 13, 2000) — Ford Motor Co. CEO Jacques Nasser once again blamed Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. before a congressional hearing, saying the tire maker "failed to share critical claims data with Ford" that might have expedited the recall of 6.5 million Firestone tires.
The tires mostly were original equipment on the Ford Explorer and other Ford vehicles. Mr. Nasser told the Senate Commerce Committee he "listened with disbelief" last week as BFS officials told a joint House subcommittee meeting they knew of tread separations in the recalled tires in 1998.
"Yet they said nothing to anyone, including Ford Motor Co.," he said. "This is not the candid and frank dialogue that Ford expects in its business relationships."
Beginning later this year, Mr. Nasser said, Ford will offer its customers "a choice of tires" as original equipment on the Ford Explorer. Though Mr. Nasser didn´t name the choices, the company has signed Michelin North America Inc. as an alternative supplier to the Explorer and has also approached Goodyear.