Ford’s F-150 brake defect troubles continue as NHTSA expands investigation to newer models

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Updated Oct 13, 2016

2015 Ford F-150A brake problem in Ford F-150 pickups is apparently a bigger issue than first realized.

Earlier this year Ford issued a safety recall to address front brake loss in certain model year 2013 and 2014 F-150 trucks with 3.5-liter engines. Nearly 300,000 pickups were recalled and Ford reported the problem was caused by the loss of brake fluid from the brake master cylinder reservoir into the brake booster, which can lead to visual and audible warnings of low brake fluid level.

Now, the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that it’s conducting an investigation into complaints that center on brake failures in 2015 and 2016 F-150 models equipped with 3.5-liter engines. No injuries or accidents have been reported.

“There appears to be a difference in the reported symptoms between the complaints on the MY 2015 vehicles (10 reports) and those on the MY 2016 vehicles (15 reports),” ODI reports on NHTSA’s website.

“The MY 2015 complaints allege symptoms of brake pedal going to the floor with sudden and complete loss of brake effectiveness, brake warning lamp illumination, and/or low or empty brake fluid level, which are consistent with the symptoms associated with the aforementioned recall, while the MY 2016 complaints allege a sudden and complete loss of brakes without the brake warning lamp illumination and low brake fluid level.

“However, some of the MY 2016 complaints allege that repair facilities diagnosed the problem as a failure of the master cylinder.”

About 282,000 trucks could be potentially affected by the problem. Ford is cooperating with federal safety officials, Reuters reports.