Ford Motor Company is taking steps to check on whether the pedal on the Transit Classic van built by one of its Chinese partners, Jiangling, could contribute to unintended acceleration.
The investigation is, thus far, confined to the Chinese made vehicles, but Ford has halted production until it clarifies the situation, according to CEO Alan Mulally, who said he demanded further explanations when he found that the pedal design was similar to the same one used by Toyota.
Mulally said he wanted Ford to get out in front of the issue as quickly as possible.
Ford’s Chinese partner, Jiangling, recently switched to using the same supplier, CTS, as Toyota uses.
“We have not yet determined we have a problem,” Mulally said during a conference call. “But we know we have no issues with the customers in China,” Mulally said.
Ford officials subsequently stressed there have been no questions raised about the pedal possibly contributing to incidents of “unintended” acceleration.
A spokesperson said as a routine precaution Ford always reviews recalls by competitors to see if they share suppliers. After the latest Toyota recall, Ford found that Jiangling had started purchasing the pedal assemblies from CTS.
“We have our own design for pedals and accelerators,” the spokesperson said.