2013 Ford Police Interceptor
A 2013 Ford Police Interceptor of the US Secret Service Uniformed Division is pictured outside the White House in Washington, DC, in July 2013. Ford says the 2013-2014 Ford Taurus could suddenly lose power to the wheels, and could roll away if the parking brake isn't applied even if the transmission is in "park" position. Creative Commons

Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F) will begin sending out notices on Aug. 29 to owners of more than 83,000 recent Ford and Lincoln SUVs and sedans in the U.S. that the company says have a defect that could cause the vehicles to suddenly roll to a stop as power to the wheels is disengaged. Additionally, the cars could roll away if the parking brake isn’t engaged even if the transmission indicates it is in the Park positon, a problem similar to one recently identified in nearly 900,000 Hyundai Sonatas.

“In the affected vehicles, the halfshaft retention circlip may not have been properly installed, and as a result, the halfshaft may move outward and disengage from the linkshaft,” said a recall acknowledgement letter from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration dated Monday (pdf). No injuries related to the manufacturing flaw have been reported.

A small difference can have a big impact. Ford provided these images to the NHTSA showing the link between the halfshaft and intermediate shaft which sends power to the wheels. At left is how it's supposed to look. At right is how it looks if there a risk of disengagement, which would cut power to the wheels unexpectedly while the vehicle is in motion. NHTSA

The vehicles included in the recall are:

* 2012-2014 Ford Edge mid-sized crossover SUV and Lincoln MKX luxury mid-sized crossover SUV, built between Sept. 2, 2010, and Nov. 30, 2013.
* 2013-2014 Ford Flex full-sized crossover SUV and Lincoln MKT full-sized crossover SUV, built between Sept. 12, 2011, and Nov. 30, 2013.
* 2013-2014 Ford Taurus full-sized sedan (including the Police Interceptor Sedan used widely by U.S. law enforcement agencies) and Lincoln MKS full-sized luxury sedan, built between Aug. 25, 2011 and Nov. 30, 2013.

Owners can call the NHTSA for more information at 1-888-327-4236.