Ford promises to fix poor security in its vulnerable models

Ford claims it has come up with a solution to cars that are easily broken into. Picture: SUPPLIED
Ford claims it has come up with a solution to cars that are easily broken into. Picture: SUPPLIED

Ford SA says it is aware of the security problems on some of its EcoSport and Fiesta models and is working on a solution.

It was reacting to a spate of complaints on social media, where users shared videos of the brand’s vehicles being broken into. Hundreds of Ford drivers have complained that they lost valuables such as laptops and bags, claiming their cars were easily broken into due to poor security features.

Owners say the door locks are easy to pick and do not set off the car alarm.

In response, Ford says criminals appear to be targeting previous-generation Fiesta and EcoSport models sold between 2013 and 2018.

“By the end of this week we will begin contacting customers with regards to the process for scheduling an appointment with a dealer,” said a Ford spokesperson.

He said Ford would offer remedies to customers at below cost, but as the break-ins are “not related to a vehicle design or manufacturing fault”, it will not provide solutions at no cost to customers.

“In many of the reported instances the alarm [if fitted] does not sound when access is gained via the key lock barrel. We have been testing various options that we believe will give customers greater peace of mind,” he said.

The first is a reconfiguration that will ensure the alarm (if existing) will remain active when entry to the vehicle is gained using the key lock on the driver’s door. Customers will need to schedule an appointment with their dealer of choice from May 6. The work will take less than an hour and cost R155.25.

Customers who require a door lock replacement as a result of their vehicle being tampered with will pay R1,199.

Fiesta Ambiente customers whose vehicles do not have an alarm and would like one fitted will pay R1,886.

Ford is investigating a security replacement lock accessory that will only allow access via the remote key fob or a nonstandard ultra-high security style “Hykee” mechanical key. The company will communicate timing and cost with customers as soon as this accessory becomes available.

Customers may contact Ford Customer Services on 0860011022, or through its social media channels.