Ford Focus and EcoSport Loss Of Oil Pressure

On 2024-01-09 13:14:25

Ford has encountered a significant challenge with specific models of its vehicles. Owners of certain 2016-2018 Ford Focus and 2018-2022 Ford EcoSport models face a concerning issue - the potential failure of the oil pump drive belt or drive belt tensioner. This problem, if unaddressed, could lead to a dramatic loss of engine oil pressure, posing serious risks to vehicle performance and safety.

The source of this concern dates back to February 2022 when Ford's Critical Concern Review Group (CCRG) first reviewed a potential issue in the 1.0L Fox Classic engine. The focus was on the oil pump belt tensioner failure. At the time, the CCRG concluded that the issue did not pose an unreasonable risk to motor vehicle safety. This decision was based on customer feedback, which primarily reported symptoms like the activation of check engine and low oil pressure lights, and occasional engine noise. There were no accident or injury allegations connected to this issue.

However, by July 2023, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reached out to Ford about allegations of loss of motive power due to engine oil pump failures in 2018 to 2021 Model Year EcoSport vehicles, equipped with the same 1.0L Fox Classic engines. Ford's subsequent analysis of 21 warranty return engines identified the root cause of these failures.


According to the defect report, in some affected vehicles, the engine oil pump drive belt tensioner arm may fracture, separate from the tensioner backing plate, or the oil pump drive belt material may degrade. This degradation can result in the loss of engine oil pressure. The consequences are potential engine damage or seizure, leading to a loss of motive power and a diminished capacity for power braking assist. These issues significantly increase the risk of a crash.

As of October 6, 2023, Ford has acknowledged 2099 warranty claims related to this issue.


Ford's response to this issue includes a recall, designated as 23S64 by Ford and 23V-905 by the NHTSA. Owners of the impacted vehicles will receive notices urging them to return to their Ford dealer for necessary repairs. These repairs will involve replacing the oil pump tensioner assembly and oil pump drive belt. Interim owner notification letters, detailing the safety risk, are expected to be mailed by February 13, 2024. A second notice will follow once the remedy parts are available.

The situation with the Ford Focus and EcoSport models underscores the importance of automotive safety and the role of regulations like the Lemon Law in protecting consumers. Owners of the affected models are advised to heed recall notices and take necessary actions to ensure their vehicles are safe and reliable. In situations like these, the Lemon Law serves as a crucial safeguard for vehicle owners. This law, which varies slightly across states, is designed to protect consumers who have purchased vehicles that fail to meet quality and performance standards. Under the Lemon Law, if a vehicle is found to be defective and the manufacturer is unable to fix the issue within a reasonable number of attempts or a specified timeframe, the owner may be entitled to a refund, replacement, or compensation.