Ford had another big year for recalls, but there's a reason why that's a good thing

It recalled 5.7 million vehicles

UPDATE: After Honda announced a recall of 2.5 million Hondas and Acuras on Thursday, Ford reached out to us about this post, which was published Wednesday with the original headline, "Ford is the most-recalled automaker for the third year running." Ford wanted us to know Honda's recall total is now biggest, at approximately 6.3 million vehicles. But the point of the story remains the same, for both Ford and Honda: The recalls show they're serious about identifying and fixing problems.


Ford has struggled with quality issues for a while now, but despite its efforts, the automaker has issued 54 recalls through December 18.

While many of the automakers with multiple recalls did so because of electrical system issues, Ford’s most-recalled component category was powertrains. The company recalled 5,692,135 vehicles in 2023, more than twice the number of the next closest automaker on the list, Stellantis. As Automotive News pointed out, General Motors recalled more vehicles, but they were spread across other brands in the company’s portfolio. Honda had the biggest single recall, at 2.5 million vehicles for a fuel pump problem, while Tesla recently recalled more than 2 million vehicles for Autopilot’s driver monitoring issues.

But Ford is making progress. By this time last year, the automaker had issued 68 recalls with more than 8.7 million vehicles affected. This year’s numbers are obviously better than that, but they’re worse than in 2021 when the company had 53 recalls involving 5.4 million vehicles.

Ford’s efforts will take time. The company is simplifying its manufacturing process and has implemented more testing and quality control procedures. Ford also said that its suppliers are providing better traceability and noted that connected vehicles and better warranty practices allow it to identify and fix problems much quicker than before.

To be fair to Ford, it sells millions of vehicles each year, so there’s plenty of opportunity for things to go wrong. Some of its recalls involve simple issues like software glitches, but some are more serious. Though the number is something Ford would like to reduce, it also shows that the automaker is serious about identifying and fixing problems. Experts agree, with one telling Automotive News that Ford’s willingness to recall vehicles for even minor issues is promising and should be considered positive.





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