Ford Motor (NYSE:F) Comes Under Auto Regulator’s Scrutiny

Ford Motor (NYSE:F) has come under the radar of the auto safety regulator, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), according to the Wall Street Journal. The regulator is investigating a recent fatal accident, that occurred on February 24 in San Antonio, Texas, and involved Ford’s Mustang Mach-E SUV. As per reports, the Mach-E struck the rear end of a stationary Honda CR-V. 

Importantly, the investigator suspects that the company’s advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) was in use at the time of the crash. Ford’s partial automation system, BlueCruise, is operational on 97% of U.S. and Canadian highways, and the Mach-E vehicles are equipped with this feature. It is worth noting that BlueCruise is classified as a Level 2 autonomous system, where the driver is responsible for the actions of the vehicle.

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) initiated an investigation into the incident on Friday.

Ford Under Regulators’ Spotlight

The latest probe now includes Ford among the list of companies under regulatory scrutiny for offering ADAS for usage on public roads in the United States. EV giant Tesla’s (TSLA) Autopilot system and General Motors (GM) Cruise unit, which provide fully autonomous cars, have remained under NTSB and NHTSA’s scrutiny for some time.

Interestingly, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently conducted a test on several automakers’ semi-autonomous systems. Ford, GM, and TSLA all received disappointing ratings in the assessment.

Is Ford a Buy or Sell Stock?

Currently, Wall Street analysts are sidelined on Ford. It has a Hold consensus rating based on five Buy, five Hold, and four Sell ratings. The analysts’ average price target on Ford stock of $13.48 implies 10.67% upside potential. Shares of the company have gained over 16% in the past year.