Michelin North America is recalling around 1.2 million tires in the United States since the tread might come apart. The recall covers some tires used as original equipment on some of Ford Motor Co.'s full-sized vans. According to Michelin, it had discovered a “tread/belt endurance” issue through warranty claims and 20 claims from consumers seeking reimbursement for damage to their vehicles.
Michelin said that there were no reports of injuries related to the issue. In a report posted on the Web site of the United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Michelin said the recalled tires were designed for commercial light trucks, full-sized heavy duty vans, small recreational vehicles and some large pickup trucks.
"Several instances of tread/belt endurance issues -- exhibited as ride vibrations, irregular wear, tread loss, or rapid air loss -- were observed for the subject tire in the third quarter of 2013," Michelin told NHTSA. In a letter dated Dec. 11, 2013, to NHTSA, Michelin said that up to 100 percent of the involved tires "could be affected during service."
It said that as of November 20, 2013, around 0.015 percent of the total US market population "has exhibited a loss of tread or rapid air loss condition," representing fewer than 200 tires. Ford employed the tires as original equipment on the 2010-2013 model E-Series van, The New York Times reported, citing a Ford spokeswoman.
Overall, the recall covers 1.3 million tires, Michelin said. The tires being recalled -- LTX M/S tires, size LT225/75R16 115/112R LRE -- were produced at Michelin's Bridgewater site in Nova Scotia, from January 2010 to June 2012. The Detroit News reported that Michelin will contact owners by early January with instructions on how they could obtain replacement tires and how to be reimbursed.