Ford South Africa said it is currently investigating alleged incidents of its Kuga SUV models suddenly catching fire.
This comes after reports that a third forensic investigation into the cause of a Ford Kuga fire which killed driver Reshall Jimmy in December 2015 was underway.
The Jimmy family believes that a mechanical or electrical fault with the Ford Kuga was to blame for the fire.
The Rapport newspaper said it was in possession of an independent investigation report which showed that the fire was caused by an electrical fault in the vehicle.
According to the report, the fire started behind an electrical panel board on the passenger side.
Other Ford Kuga owners have also reported that their vehicles experienced sudden fires.
According to the Rapport, these owners said Ford refused to investigate the cause of the fires.
Keveen Jimmy, the brother of Reshall, said 17 local Kuga owners have come forward regarding their vehicles experiencing problems.
Ford South Africa said in a statement that it has met with the Jimmy family and their legal representatives to go through the findings of its “detailed examination into Mr. Jimmy’s Kuga incident”.
“Our examination shows that the fire in Mr. Jimmy’s Kuga originated at the rear of the vehicle and not in the engine compartment.”
“We have lodged a request to gain access to the police report and other investigative materials to better understand all the facts concerning the case,” it said.
Responding to the reported claims, Ford said: “Our investigations into the alleged incidents involving Ford Kugas in South Africa are not complete at this time.”
Ford said Kuga owners who have a concern relating to their vehicle can bring it into a Ford dealership for an inspection.