SAN ANTONIO - Ford is recalling more than 154,000 Fiesta subcompacts. The company says if the passenger seat is empty, the side air bag won't inflate to protect passengers in the rear seats in some crashes.
While Ford designed the airbag system to work in such a circumstance, the Fiesta's owner's manual didn't spell out the specifics. This means the cars are out of compliance with government safety standards.
Ford says that the fix involves a software update that enables the side curtain airbag even if the passenger seat is not occupied, bringing it in line with the owner's manual.
The recall involves Fiestas from the 2011 through 2013 model years. Ford dealers will fix the problem for free.
For more information, contact the NHTSA hotline at (888) 327-4236 or visit www.safercar.gov
and search for “Ford recall campaign No. 12C26.”