Lawsuit Targeting Ford for Faulty Transmissions Powershifts into High Gear

Ford’s dual-clutch PowerShift transmission has made the Blue Oval a number of enemies over the past several years. Now, nearly 7,000 U.S. Ford owners are looking for a pound of flesh.

A lawsuit filed against the automaker is seeking compensation for individual damages claimed by the plaintiffs, all of whom own a 2012-2016 Ford Focus or 2011-2016 Ford Fiesta. The suit, which is just the latest of many, contains a familiar complaint about Ford’s small-car tranny. Basically, that it’s awful, and not even an exorcist can free it from its demons.

The owners cite “shuddering, slipping, bucking, jerking, hesitation while changing gears, premature internal wear, delays in downshifting and, in some cases, sudden or delayed acceleration” as the reason for their dissatisfaction, Automotive News reports. Unlike some class actions, the persons behind this suit (filed late last month) aren’t simply looking to divvy up a pile of cash. Each plaintiff wants Ford to cover exact costs.

Ford has issued numerous technical service bulletins to dealers — the suit claims 20 — since the transmission’s debut, all in a bid to stem the flow of complaints. Despite software updates designed to smooth balky shifts, the plaintiffs claim no fix has worked.

Three years ago, Ford extended the powertrain warranty on PowerShift-equipped vehicles. The warranty went from five years or 60,000 miles to seven years and 100,000 miles. While Ford offered a similar extended warranty to Australian customers, that didn’t stop a class-action lawsuit filed from Down Under.

Ford settled another PowerShift-related American class action back in March.

“Ford must be held accountable for design and manufacturing defects of the PowerShift transmission that has compromised the safety of the vehicles and cost owners significant loss in vehicle value, reliable transportation and time,” said Ken Stern, founder and principal of Stern Law PLLC, in a statement. The firm filed the most recent suit with the Wayne County Circuit Court.

Ford hasn’t commented on the latest PowerShift lawsuit, only issuing a statement regarding its commitment to delivering high-quality vehicles.

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