DETROIT (Sept. 7)—Ford Motor Co. in late August sent letters out to the owners of 777,742 Windstar minivans, model years 1999 through 2001, after receiving 10 reports of windshield wiper motor assemblies on the vehicles catching fire and 73 reports of wiper motor covers melting. A combination of where the wiper motor assembly is mounted and pinholes on the exterior of the motor gear cover could allow water, salt and windshield washer solution to short out the electric motor, resulting in loss of wiper function or ignition of the wiper motor cover material, a Ford spokesman said. "We can't blame the supplier," he said without identifying which company provided the motors for those minivans. "It's a combination of the design and where it's mounted on the Windstar, allowing (liquid) to get in." Ford is replacing the windshield motor covers with an upgraded version that offers improved water resistance.