Ford South Africa has been testing various models within its line-up to understand potential security vulnerabilities around the key lock barrel.
Through this process, Ford said that its Focus ST and Focus RS appear to be unaffected by the particular modus operandi being used – however certain Focus Ambiente and Trend models (built from September 2015 to date) could be the target of opportunistic thieves.
This comes after certain older Ford Fiesta and Ford EcoSport models were identified as being at risk in April.
“Criminals appear to gain access to the vehicles by forcing the driver door lock to the open position,” it said.
“This action has identified a weakness in the perimeter security that results in the following occurring if the driver door lock is forced – all doors are unlocked and the tailgate microswitch is activated.
“Our dealer network is now able to assist Focus customer with a security upgrade for the nominal cost of R155.25 (including VAT).
“The upgrade will ensure that when the vehicle is opened, with a key or an object the system perceives to be a key (for example a screwdriver), all doors, except the driver door, will remain locked, including the boot/rear liftgate.”
Ford South Africa said that the upgrade takes no more than 30 minutes to complete, however, it is imperative that customers book an appointment.
Customers who require a door lock replacement as a result of their vehicle being tampered with can also make an appointment with their dealer, it said.
“The replacement lock will cost R1,199 (incl VAT) providing there is no additional damage to the door that requires repair.
“It is important to note that only customers that have had their locks broken should make an appointment for a lock replacement.
“Ford continues to work with a supplier to be able to offer an alarm system that can be retrofitted as an accessory and is looking to offer a stronger security replacement lock accessory. Ford will continue to communicate with customers on the availability of these accessories”