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Old 13th November 2015, 18:22   #1
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Default Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Poornima Krishnan shares this horrific story with us.

Brand new Ford EcoSport Titanium Petrol
Delivery date: 14th October, 2015.

This happened when they were travelling from Bangalore to Sringeri on 31st October, 2015. The axle of the car simply gave away ! The front end collapsed with such force that the alloy was completely fractured.

Prima facie, there appears to be no impact, accident or driver error which caused this. Moderator Jaggu agrees. It was a clean stretch of tarmac (no potholes).

This seems to be a major manufacturing defect. I'm just glad that no one was injured. If it had to happen in the middle of an overtaking manouveur or fast corner, it would have disastrous consequences.

Right now, the car is in Mangalore (it got towed from Herur). Poornima says that Ford isn't responding in this matter.

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0022.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0029.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0032.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0035.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0026.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0023.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-img20151101wa0027.jpg

Worse still, forget any investigation from Ford or the dealership, the service center coolly sends an estimate of Rs. 3.4 lakh across!

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-05599bft82401estimpage001.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-05599bft82401estimpage002.jpg

Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)-05599bft82401estimpage003.jpg

In other news, Ford just announced a recall today...but for the EcoSport's rear end:

Quote:
Ford India is proactively contacting select customers to voluntarily inspect their EcoSport vehicles, made at the company’s Chennai plant between November 2013 and April 2014, for a potential concern related to Rear Twist Beam bolt.

In some of the affected vehicles, there is a possibility that the Rear Twist Beam (RTB) bolt may not be tightened to specification, which may cause the pivot bolt to break. This condition can potentially compromise vehicle handling and thereby increase the risk of an accident. This is a proactive voluntary action and no accidents related to the concern have been reported.

Ford is writing to 16,444 EcoSport customers for getting their vehicles inspected at a local Ford dealer. If needed, Ford dealership will carry out necessary rework free of cost.”

Last edited by GTO : 13th November 2015 at 18:25.
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Old 13th November 2015, 18:27   #2
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

How shocking! Never heard of this kind of failure before, that too on a brand new car! Ford should own up and take remedial action a.s.a.p., if they have to remain competitive in the market.

I pity the poor customer who shelled out big bucks and got a raw deal in effect. However it is good to know that nobody was hurt.
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Old 13th November 2015, 18:38   #3
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Good to know the occupants are safe, the victim should take this up strongly with the Ford India Mgmt, if they dont respond, she should post it on the Ford India FB page and other social media. I hate the attitude of these videsi manufacturers who are so negligent towards Indians consumers.
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Old 13th November 2015, 18:42   #4
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Products do have defects, but never this bad! This is a severe fault and brand damaging incident. Ford better compensate the customer well and asap at that. Good that no one is hurt.
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Old 13th November 2015, 19:05   #5
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Poornima Krishnan shares this horrific story with us.
That would be a scary experience, particularly when it comes out of the blue. And it would be heartbreaking to have this happen in such a new vehicle.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
The front end collapsed with such force that the alloy was completely fractured.
This is the strange part. Those alloys are tough. Really tough. Courtesy of Bangalore roads, I've put them through a lot (e.g. coming off a flyover at ~70 km/h and hitting a large pothole), and they were absolutely fine. So I'm puzzled at what happened to cracked it, and at the same time, it also points to the forces involved.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Worse still, forget any investigation from Ford or the dealership, the service center coolly sends an estimate of Rs. 3.4 lakh across
The repair estimate looks like its been padded on the assumption that insurance will pay for it. For instance, it includes a headlight unit, when its clear that there's been no frontal impact/damage, it includes a speaker/radio, when the door's damage seems to be only to the sheet metal,

What is very annoying is that the ASC don't seem to have bumped this up to Ford India to understand what happened. This is unusual enough that it warrants a look from Ford's engineers. As far as we can see, there's no impact damage. An investigation will indicate whether it was a failure in fitment or mechanical failure; and where it started (e.g. was it the alloy that cracked resulting in the other damage, or the other way around and started at the axle, as the title indicates).
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Old 13th November 2015, 19:05   #6
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

If I was the owner of this car, I would have got the axle and sent it to a reputable lab for analysis.

Impact/ stress failure in metals is quite obvious and easily detectable. If they can prove manufacturing defect then I am willing to bet that Ford will be singing a different song.

Btw...

#56... They want to change the windshield? What for? I dont see any cracks!

Last edited by AbhiJ : 13th November 2015 at 19:08.
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Old 13th November 2015, 19:19   #7
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

From the looks of it the axle cv gave away for whatever reason damaged rest of the suspension parts, and then the wheel assembly came off damaging the body parts etc. Might be a freak failure but definitely a scary incident to be in.

Yes the road seems to be clean and the skid marks seems to be starting after the undulation on the road.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AbhiJ View Post
#56... They want to change the windshield? What for? I dont see any cracks!
5th pic you can see the windshield has cracked.

Last edited by Jaggu : 13th November 2015 at 19:26.
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Old 13th November 2015, 19:30   #8
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Wow that is extremely scary. Shudder to think the situation if this would have happened on a busy highway. At least they can thank their lucky stars that it happened on a empty stretch.

Curious, is this the new face lifted Ecosport? Since the delivery was on 14th and the new one was launched on 6/7th October. If it a face lifted one, then it could point to a larger problem.

If it is pre face-lift assume it may have been from the last batches manufactured. Could it be a lapse in quality control considering the face-lift was on its way?
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Old 13th November 2015, 19:48   #9
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
If it is pre face-lift assume it may have been from the last batches manufactured. Could it be a lapse in quality control considering the face-lift was on its way?
I looked up the VIN on ETIS, it's a 1.5L petrol model. The facelift will have had no mechanical changes at all to the powertrain, so it wouldn't have warranted any changes to the quality control processes and checks, to allow any omission to occur.

I look forward to this being featured on TBHP's Facebook and home page, and await Ford India's response. I've always been a champion of Ford's recall procedures, lets see if they handle this equally well.
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Old 13th November 2015, 21:13   #10
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

It does look like a lower ball joint failure at driving speeds. I wonder if the part is shared with the Figo or the fiesta. This kinds of failure does not happen till 150 K kms or more, not expected on a brand new car.
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Old 13th November 2015, 22:29   #11
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

This is an absolute drivers' nightmare!

I can immediately think of three possibilities,

1. Manufacturing defect.
2. Severe impact at high speed (Speed breaker, pothole, huge stone etc.)
3. Rust due to storage in the stockyard.
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Old 13th November 2015, 23:33   #12
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Catalyst_delhi View Post
It does look like a lower ball joint failure at driving speeds. I wonder if the part is shared with the Figo or the fiesta. This kinds of failure does not happen till 150 K kms or more, not expected on a brand new car.
I suspect the steering tie rod on passenger side. It must've broke at speed, causing this wheel to toe out, pull back on the axle, lower joint and suspension arm, which broke the lower ball joint and tore the axle CV joint.

You may see that the lower arm is heavily twisted, suggesting that it was pulled by the wheel.

Axle does not locate a wheel, so its breakage cannot cause suspension to come apart like this. Its the wheel which toed outwards, and pulled out the axle along with it.

Last edited by black_rider : 13th November 2015 at 23:38.
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Old 13th November 2015, 23:56   #13
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Thats very very scary. Good that no impact to the occupants. Of all the Ecosport threads this is the first one I am reading where there has been an issue and that too of such a magnitude.

Will have to see how Ford goes about handling this.
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Old 14th November 2015, 10:14   #14
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

Quote:
Originally Posted by black_rider View Post
I suspect the steering tie rod on passenger side. It must've broke at speed, causing this wheel to toe out, pull back on the axle, lower joint and suspension arm, which broke the lower ball joint and tore the axle CV joint.

You may see that the lower arm is heavily twisted, suggesting that it was pulled by the wheel.

Axle does not locate a wheel, so its breakage cannot cause suspension to come apart like this. Its the wheel which toed outwards, and pulled out the axle along with it.
I agree with you here. I thought about this too. The Tie rod is cheap but super critical. Would be interesting to know if they recently aligned the car and the Jam nut on the tie rod was not torqued properly. It takes a lot for the tie rod to break.
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Old 14th November 2015, 10:28   #15
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Default re: Ford EcoSport - Axle breaks on highway. EDIT: Due to accident (details on page 11)

This is pretty horrible. I have seen something similar to this happen to a Tavera once which was running right in front of my car.

However, that car already looked like it was on its last legs and fortunately, it wasn't going too fast therefore there were no injuries.

But this is pretty horrible and scary stuff. Glad no one was hurt.
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