Car Owners File Class-Action Lawsuit Against Ford Over Dangerous, Unsafe Transmissions
May 19, 2016 07:00 PM EDT
Car owners have filed a class-action lawsuit over Ford's dangerous "PowerShift" transmission and around 60,000 could join the filing. According to reports, the dangerous transmission causes sudden acceleration and difficulty to stop while braking.
The car owners who have filed the lawsuit are from Australia and they own Ford EcoSport, Fiesta and Focus models. According to SBS, one of the people who have filed the lawsuit is a woman whose vehicle caught fire due to the unsafe transmission. The lawsuit was filed in behalf of Bannister Law.
EcoSport, Fiesta, and Focus are said to be equipped with six-speed, double clutch Ford PowerShift transmission. Around 60,000 cars were equipped with such.
The woman who claims that her vehicle caught fire due to the PowerShift transmission has been identified as Kelly Richards. She owns a Ford Fiesta and she said that it has been in and out of the dealership for numerous repairs since she bought it. She added that it was not driving properly and was shuddering when she accelerated. An independent mechanic then identified that the transmission was the problem, Daily Mail reported.
It was during a short trip when the engine of the vehicle began to smoke and she noted that it quickly engulfed in flames.
The lawyer representing the drivers, Charles Bannister, said that many of the accounts of the affected drivers claim that the cars are not free of defects and are not safe. These then breach the Australian consumer law, Car Advice reported. The lawsuit is seeking full refunds and damages from repair costs, out of pocket expenses, and aggravated damages resulting from stress, inconvenience, and humiliation.
This is not the first time that a lawsuit over the PowerShift transmission has been filed against Ford. A class action lawsuit was filed in the United States over the same problem.
Back in 2014, Ford Australia extended the warranties of 47,000 Fiesta, Focus, and EcoSport models acknowledging that the PowerShift auto gearbox exhibited excessive transmission clutch shudder when there is light acceleration. Ford said during that time that there is an extended warranty and they could cover repairs on the clutch and input shaft seals on the transmission. They would also cover transmission software calibration. The offer has, however, expired last January 2015.
A Ford spokesman said that they are aware of the lawsuit but they are yet to receive a copy. The spokesman had no further comment on the matter.