As Ford Dumps Money on Chicago, the Month-old Ranger Sees Its First Recall

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
We’re committed to finding, researching, and recommending the best products. We earn commissions from purchases you make using links in our articles. Learn more here
as ford dumps money on chicago the month old ranger sees its first recall

Ahead of production of its all-new 2020 Ford Explorer, Police Interceptor Utility, and Lincoln Aviator at the Chicago Assembly plant, Ford is greasing the wheels with a $1 billion cash injection, adding 500 jobs in the process.

The money, destined for both Chicago Assembly and a nearby stamping plant, will ensure three crucial products make it to showrooms and law enforcement fleets by summer. As Ford plays Santa Claus, another important product — one which went on sale just last month — is now under recall.

While 3,500 vehicles is a small number in the recall world, it’s a pretty big chunk of all North American Ford Rangers in existence at this point. Automotive News reports Ford sold 2,153 Rangers in North America last month — the midsize pickup’s first month on the market.

The issue involves the truck’s shifter, which can move out of “park” while the engine is off. The automaker claims “the PRNDL bezel wiring may interfere with the shifter interlock override, preventing the shifter from locking in the park position and allowing the driver to shift the transmission out of park with the vehicle off and without a foot on the brake pedal.”

Of the 3,500 recalled vehicles, some 500 or so are located in Canada. The affected trucks rolled out of Ford’s Michigan Assembly plant between June 4th, 2018, and Jan. 9th, 2019, with the automaker claiming it isn’t aware of any accidents or injuries resulting from the fault.

In happier news, the $1 billion investment in Chicago Assembly sees the plant gain new a body and paint shop, plus upgrades to the final assembly area. Other plant areas (the parking lot and cafeteria, to name two) see upgrades. New stamping lines are coming to Chicago Stamping.

Employment between the two plants should rise to 5,800 workers, and Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s president of global markets, told Bloomberg that hiring is nearly complete.

In an about-face to its previous all-gas Interceptor Utility, the 2020 model gains a hybrid drivetrain as standard equipment, though agencies can choose to go gas-only. The civilian Explorer also gains a hybrid variant, as well as a sportier ST model borrowing its engine from its Aviator platform mate. Lincoln’s new midsize crossover also goes green, though in a more substantial way than its Blue Oval brethren.

The Aviator’s plug-in hybrid variant gains considerable power to go with its all-electric range, with Lincoln positioning it as a performance upgrade.

[Images: Ford]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

More by Steph Willems

Join the conversation
2 of 33 comments
  • WildcatMatt WildcatMatt on Feb 08, 2019

    Shifting into and out of Park seems like it should be something any vehicle manufacturer should have down cold by now.

  • EBFlex EBFlex on Feb 08, 2019

    Typical Ford. And the truck isn't new, why is this happening.

  • ToolGuy I appreciate the thoughtful comments from the little people here, and I would like to remind everyone that Ford Motor Company offers a full range of vehicles which are ideal for any driving environment including New York City. The size and weight our of product portfolio has been fully and completely optimized to be friendly to the planet and friendly to pedestrians while consuming the bare minimum of resources from our precious planet (I am of course a lifelong environmentalist). Plus, our performance models will help you move forward and upward by conquering obstacles and limits such as congestion and your fellow humans more quickly at a higher rate of speed. I invite you to learn more at our website.Signed, William Clay Ford Jr.
  • George Hughes What ever happened to the American can-do attitude. I know what, it was coopted by the fossil fuel industry in their effort to protect their racket.
  • 28-Cars-Later "But Assemblyman Phil Ting, the San Franciscan Democrat who wrote the electric school bus legislation, says this is all about the health and wellbeing of Golden State residents. In addition to the normal air pollution stemming from exhaust gasses, he believes children are being exposed to additional carcinogens by just being on a diesel bus."Phil is into real estate, he doesn't know jack sh!t about science or medicine and if media were real it would politely remind him his opinions are not qualified... if it were real. Another question if media were real is why is a very experienced real estate advisor and former tax assessor writing legislation on school busses? If you read the rest of his bio after 2014, his expertise seems to be applied but he gets into more and more things he's not qualified to speak to or legislate on - this isn't to say he isn't capable of doing more but just two years ago Communism™ kept reminding me Dr. Fauxi knew more about medicine than I did and I should die or something. So Uncle Phil just gets a pass with his unqualified opinions?Ting began his career as a real estate  financial adviser at  Arthur Andersen and  CBRE. He also previously served as the executive director of the  Asian Law Caucus, as the president of the Bay Area Assessors Association, and on the board of  Equality California. [url=][1][/url][h3][/h3]In 2005, Ting was appointed San Francisco Assessor-Recorder in 2005 by Mayor  Gavin Newsom, becoming San Francisco’s highest-ranking  Chinese-American official at the time. He was then elected to the post in November 2005, garnering 58 percent of the vote.Ting was re-elected Assessor-Recorder in 2006 and 2010During his first term in the Assembly, Ting authored a law that helped set into motion the transformation of Piers 30-32 into what would become  Chase Center the home of the  Golden State Warriors
  • RHD This looks like a lead balloon. You could buy a fantastic classic car for a hundred grand, or a Mercedes depreciationmobile. There isn't much reason to consider this over many other excellent vehicles that cost less. It's probably fast, but nothing else about it is in the least bit outstanding, except for the balance owed on the financing.
  • Jeff A bread van worthy of praise by Tassos.