The intensity growth of manufacturing industry in India is increasing the demand of CNC turning centers. The producers of CNC turning centers are trying to fulfil this demand. The quality and reliability of such CNC turning centers is critical for manufacturers and users to meet the market demand. In this context, it is required to identify the potential failures and minimize their occurrence probability. Failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) is a robust methodology used to study the risk and reliability of various systems. In this paper, FMEA methodology is used to analyze the risk involved in the operation of CNC turning centers. The objective of the analysis was to identify critical failure modes, components and sub-systems. The study uses field failure data from more than 50 CNC turning centers and more than five industrial experts. FMEA results are further compared to the failure rates obtained from the field failure data. The results of the FMEA analysis are useful for system reliability improvement and optimizing maintenance. Electrical and electronic components have higher failure rates compared to mechanical components. CNCS, MT, XZAS, HS, ChS and SS are found to be critical sub-systems.