Ford Motor Co. (F) has expanded its recall of Escape and Mazda Tribute (search) sport utility vehicles because of problems with the rear liftgate, which if left unlocked could open during a crash, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said on Monday.

More than 310,000 vehicles from the 2001-2005 model years are involved in the latest recall. Ford owns one-third of Mazda Motor Corp (search).

Earlier this month, Ford announced that it was recalling more than 600,000 Escapes and Mazda Tributes from the 2002-2004 model years because the accelerator cable may prevent the engine from returning to idle, which could increase stopping distance and result in a crash.