WASHINGTON (Aug. 27, 2010) — Ford Motor Co. has recalled approximately 575,000 Ford Windstar minivans, manufactured between Sept. 1, 1997, and Feb. 28, 2003, for possible corrosion of the rear axles, Ford has told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Some 462,750 of the minivans were sold in northern U.S. states, Ford said—Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. The remaining vehicles were sold in Canada, the car maker said.
Years of service on salted winter roads can cause the rear axles on these minivans to corrode and weaken, leading in some cases to complete fractures of the axles, according to Ford.
As parts become available, Ford dealers will inspect the axles and if necessary install reinforcement brackets free of charge, the company said. Ford will begin notifying owners of the vehicles on or about Sept. 27, it said.