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Ford recalls 140,000 cars in India, South Africa

By Erika Kinetz

Associated Press

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 14 2012 6:20 a.m. MDT

FILE - In this Tuesday, March 9, 2010 file photo, Ford Vice President and President Asia pacific and Africa Joe Hinrichs, right, and President and Managing Director Ford India Michael Boneham, left, pose with the newly launched Figo car in New Delhi, India. Ford Motor Co.'s Indian subsidiary is recalling nearly 130,000 of its most popular cars. The manufacturing defects date back as far as 2008 and can cause fire and other problems, the company said late Monday, Aug. 13, 2012.

Manish Swarup, File, Associated Press

Enlarge photo»

MUMBAI, India — Ford Motor Co.'s Indian subsidiary is recalling nearly 140,000 of its most popular cars for manufacturing defects that date back as far as 2008 and can cause fires and other problems.

Ford said it will examine 111,000 Ford Figo and Classic models sold in India and manufactured between January 2008 and December 2010 for a faulty rear twist beam, which can compromise brake performance and make the vehicle inoperable.

Ford will also replace a hose in 17,655 Figo and Classic cars in India, which were produced between September 2010 and February 2011, as a precautionary measure. The company said oil can leak from the hose, resulting in noxious fumes, smoke and in extreme cases, fire.

The company said an additional 10,000 vehicles exported to South Africa would also be recalled.

No injuries have occurred as a result of the defects, Ford said.

Like other global carmakers in India, Ford relies heavily on local suppliers to keep down costs.

Toyota, Tata Motors, Honda and Maruti Suzuki have all had to recall cars in India in recent years, although none has been as big as the Ford recall.

Ford's compact Figo, launched in 2010, made the American auto giant a real player in India's competitive small-car market.

Ford has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into India, part of the company's strategy to pursue growth in Asia over the next decade. In March, Ford laid the cornerstone for a new $1 billion factory in the Indian state of Gujarat.

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