Ford Recalls 1.2 Million Sedans

2002 Mercury Sable car associated with Alfonso Rodriguez Jr., man arrested on kidnapping charge in the disappearance of Dru Sjodin, Grand Forks Police Department photo, 12-3-03
Ford Motor Co. is recalling more than 1.2 million Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable sedans because of problems with their brake lights and air filters, the company said Wednesday.

Ford is recalling 938,789 Taurus and Sable sedans from the 2000-2003 model years because their brake lights can malfunction. The defect has caused at least two accidents and one injury, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Ford is recalling an additional 281,926 Sable and Taurus sedans from the 2003 model year because the air filter paper in the engine can smolder or burn. Ford spokesman Glenn Ray said a supplier put the wrong chemical on the filter paper.

Ray said 118,000 vehicles made early in the 2003 model year will get both repairs. Vehicles made later in the 2003 model year already have a new brake light system, so they will only need to have the air filter papers replaced.

Ford recalled 157,000 Taurus and the Sable sedans in 2000 for the same brake light defect. Ray said the repair didn't solve the problem, so the brake lights will now be replaced.

Ray said 2004 models of the Taurus and Sable have a new brake light system. Models made prior to 2000 also had a different system and aren't affected in the recall.

Ford was expected to begin notifying customers of the recall on Wednesday.