Ford Transmission Lawsuit Overview
Ford was accused of concealing a defect in certain Ford Fiesta and Ford Focus vehicles that can cause jerking, difficulty stopping, and serious engine problems. The lawsuit was filed against Ford Motor Company in a federal court in Delaware. Its plaintiffs argue that in practice, Ford’s Powershift Transmission is “plagued by numerous problems and safety concerns.”
Internal documents from Ford, uncovered by the Detroit Free Press suggest that the company was aware of transmission issues and chose to continue manufacturing and selling vehicles equipped with these defective transmissions anyway. Because of this, Ford received a $10 million fine in Australia due to their “unconscionable conduct.” The auto company is currently being investigated for fraud by the Department of Justice.
It is alleged that Ford’s use of cheaper materials and a new transmission design prone to overheating resulted in the demise of the PowerShift name. According to the lawsuit, the transmission defect causes the clutches to overheat, fail, and damage other powertrain components. Allegedly, Ford has never publicly acknowledged that this transmission defect even exists.
The Ford class action states that instead the automaker has “actively concealed and continues to conceal, the Transmission Defect by, among other things, telling customers that the symptoms associated with the Transmission Defect were ‘normal driving conditions.’’
This is not the first time Ford has been hit with lawsuits regarding defective transmissions in both the Ford Fiesta and Ford Focus. In 2020, the auto company settled another Ford Focus Class Action lawsuit, which accused the automaker of knowingly selling certain Fiesta and Focus vehicles with defective PowerShift transmissions that could place drivers and passengers at risk.
The automaker paid millions of dollars in the 2020 Ford transmission settlement to buy back affected vehicles. The 2020 Fiesta and Focus transmission settlement involved approximately 7,000 drivers. The 2022 lawsuit involves newer Fiesta and Focus vehicles.
How do I know if my transmission is affected?
Affected vehicles have notable powertrain problems. Ford cars with defective PowerShift transmissions may:
- Delay when shifting
- Wear prematurely
- Have difficulty changing gears
Drivers may also notice delayed acceleration and or difficulty stopping. The 2022 class action suit asserts that “the Powershift transmission will cause the vehicles to lurch and move forward even when drivers apply the brakes.” These issues can eventually result in transmission or engine failure.
The fixes offered in any of the Ford focus transmission recalls have not solved the problem. Owners continue to have trouble despite multiple clutch replacements. Previously, the automaker announced internally that it has no solution to the transmission defect. Outside of extended warranties, Ford drivers have little other recourse.
Which makes and models are affected?
Any Ford vehicle equipped with a DPS6 clutch or Powershift transmission may be affected. The following vehicle models have been sold with this type of transmission:
- Ford Fiesta
- Ford Focus
- Ford C-MAX
- Ford Mondeo
- Ford Puma
- Ford S-MAX
- Ford Galaxy
- Ford Escape
- Ford Ecosport
- Ford Edge
Powershift lawsuits against Ford have mainly centered on the Fiesta and Focus, however, these are not the only Ford vehicles sold with DPS6 transmissions. Ford is currently selling 2022 Ecosport and Edge vehicles with this transmission type.
Who can join the Ford Focus Class Action Lawsuit?
The 2022 Ford transmission lawsuit includes anyone in the United States who has leased or purchased a 2017-2019 Ford Fiesta or a 2017-2018 Ford Focus vehicle with DPS6 clutch transmission systems. If you wish to pursue a lemon law claim instead of accepting a possible class action settlement, then you must opt out before the associated opt-out deadline.
How do I get Ford to buyback my vehicle?
Previous Powershift class action settlements involve Ford “buying back” affected Fiesta and Focus vehicles. If you have opted out of those suits or if your vehicle is a newer Ford model, then you may not be included in that settlement. To secure a buyback settlement from Ford, you may have to pursue an individual lemon law claim.
Should I Pursue a Lemon Law Case or a Class Action Settlement?
It may be in your best interest to pursue am individual lemon law case instead of accepting a class action settlement, as you may receive far more in compensation through an individual claim. A lemon law claim allows individuals who have purchased defective vehicles to seek compensation from the manufacturer if they have experienced repeat problems with their vehicle during the warranty period. Through a lemon law claim, you are eligible to receive a refund or cash compensation for your defective vehicle.
Lemon law claims differ from class action lawsuits, in which multiple individuals experiencing the same issue or defect with their product come together to file one claim against the manufacturer. Instead of one individual accepting a settlement, one settlement is split among multiple claimants involved in the suit.
This may not be beneficial for your particular case. What you may end up with from a class action settlement may not be enough to cover all the damages associated with owning or leasing your lemon vehicle.
Contact a Lemon Law Attorney
To know if you qualify for an individual claim, you should speak with an experienced lemon law attorney who can assess the details of your specific case and determine your eligibility.
Lemon laws are complex and nuanced so you will need the assistance of an experienced legal representative if you are interested in pursuing an individual lemon law claim. Auto manufacturers often hire attorneys who specialize in this field of law, there is no reason why you should not protect yourself and do the same.
If you live in California and have questions about your Ford or any other vehicle, the Lemon Law Experts can help you. Since 2009, we have served as California’s premier lemon law firm. We have helped thousands of consumers across the state of California recover millions for their California lemon law claims.
Our team of Lemon Law Experts regularly secure outstanding settlements from some of the biggest names in the auto industry, including manufacturers such as GM, Subaru, Tesla, and Ford. Find out what you could receive in recovery by giving us a call at 877-885-5366 or by filling out an online case evaluation form today.