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Mustang Mach-E Recall: Ford wants to fix hardware issue with software update

Photo: Ford

Ford is recalling 48,924 Mustang Mach-E electric cars in the United States. A problem with the high voltage battery contactor could also cause the engine to lose power while driving, creating the risk of an accident. A software update should help, although Ford’s description of the problem leaves open why it should work.

Frequent fast charging or full throttle throttle lead to the problem

In the nearly 50,000 vehicles potentially affected, repeated recharging with direct current (fast recharging) and / or frequent recovery of maximum engine performance by pressing the accelerator pedal can cause excessive heating of the contactors due to the very high currents flowing in this situation. This can cause a malfunction that manifests itself in two different ways: either the contactor no longer closes properly while driving and only transmits insufficient electrical power to the engine, resulting in power losses. Or it is permanently closed because the contact surfaces have been welded together.

According to Ford, neither the design chosen nor the fact that the components have variations are designed for these high temperatures. The message is: Hardware is the problem.

Software update to fix the heat problem

However, a software update should fix it, which should also be available over-the-air from July 2022. However, this should only help if temperatures are too high because the contactor was switched incorrectly or at the wrong time. and the switching behavior has been adapted. It cannot be assumed that Ford is only reducing the maximum allowable current flow and thus maximum performance and charging capacity.

That only part of the vehicles, noisy CNBC All models produced at the Mexican plant from May 27, 2020 to May 24, 2022 are affected, suggesting that the software is not perfectly adapted to the hardware used in this plant during this period.

The highest thermal loads occur when the relay is switched under load and an arc occurs as a result. However, Ford itself does not make this specific connection.

That CNBC also reported that Ford had informed dealerships that they would write to affected customers as soon as repair and replacement parts information became available, but this raises doubts that ultimately only a software update for the Secondary on-board diagnostic control module and the Battery energy control module could help.

The nearly 50,000 interested owners should be sure of this with the official letter at the latest. Until then, they can continue to use their Mustang Mach-E as usual, Ford says.

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