Rust Issues Prompt NHTSA Investigations of 2003-2004 Ford Minivans, GM Full-Size Vans
Older Ford Freestar, Mercury Monterey, Chevrolet Express, and GMC Savana vans are being investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for corrosion problems, while the Infiniti M45 is being investigated for faulty fuel level readings.
There have been complaints that the anchor mounts in some Freestar and Monterey vans have become detached from the vehicle because of road salt. The side anchors that hold down the third-row seat are mounted to the rear wheel wells, and can become detached because of severe salt corrosion on the rear wheel wells. The road salt is also causing the fuel filler pipe to rust and leak in 2003 Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana vans, but only built with a left-side passenger door (i.e. 1500 models).
The fuel filler pipes on these vans routes through the rear wheel well, leaving it exposed to road debris and salt that can ultimately crack the pipes. Most of these complaints came from owners who live in states with colder climates that rely heavily on road salt.
Meanwhile, NHTSA also opened an investigation into 2003-2004 Infiniti M45 models over erroneous fuel gauges. Drivers report fuel level reading indicates the tank has gas when, in fact, it has run dry. Although this has left a few owners stranded on the side of the road, the NHTSA reports no accidents or injuries connected to the issue.