Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Focus RS Recall Letter

So Ford has finally admitted they screwed up some of the head gaskets on the Focus RS cars.  As I understand it the story goes that the 2.3 L is the same engine  that Ford uses in the Mustang EcoBoost car.  But unlike the Mustang the RS produces much more power and has a slightly different head.  But someone on the Ford assembly line didn’t get the memo so they were using the Mustang head gasket on the RS engines.  This causes under high pressure this causes the head gasket to allow coolant to get into the cylinder causing coolant loss, misfires, white smoke, and in extreme cases hydro lock.

At first it seemed Ford was trying to ignore the issue often blaming the problems on aftermarket performance parts or heavy driving.  However with multiple owners destroying engines as well as individual shops doing their own investigations it became clear the problem was on in Ford’s lap.  This issue was made even more clear when you looked at the part numbers for head gasket replacement.  The Mustang 2.3 head gasket and the RS head gasket replacement were totally different part numbers.  So finally the recall letters happened.

Ford said it really only affected around 45 vehicles so I had my fingers crossed that mine was not one of them.  However a few weeks ago I received my letter.  Now this doesn’t necessarily mean my car has the issue.  It is to be pressure tested to see if they can detect the problem.  This worries me a bit because what if they pressure test it and stress the engine but don’t see a problem, then the test creates issues that appear later. 

Either way it's going to have to wait until the Shelby is out of it's winter storage.  They say in the letter the process could take up to two days.  So if the worst happens I'll need to have something else to drive.  So I'll keep everyone up to date when the time to do it draws near.

Wish me luck.