In a prior post, we discussed how Hyundai consumers brought a class action lawsuit against the Korean automaker due to misrepresentations about fuel efficiency. We have recently learned that Ford Motor Company has been snared in a class action due to engine defects.
In Jason Schmidt et al. v. Ford Motor Company, a group of six car owners who purchased Ford F-150 trucks and Lincoln Navigator SUVs claim that Ford knowingly sold vehicles that had defects that caused performance and safety issues. They also claim that Ford knew about the problems and concealed them in order to avoid repairing them according to the vehicles’ warranties.
The plaintiffs further allege that for seven years Ford knew about mechanical defects that would cause hesitation, sudden losses of power (or deceleration), and did nothing to correct these problems. They rely on a 2008 technical service bulletin to Ford dealers on how to repair such defects. Under normal circumstances, an auto manufacturer would issue a recall so that mechanical problems could be repaired. The class insists that Ford intentionally did not report the same defects to vehicle owners in order avoid the costs (and losses) associated with recalling vehicles.
We find this case interesting not only because the alleged defects could have led to catastrophic injuries, it appears that Ford intentionally misled consumers into buying faulty vehicles and orchestrated a plan to circumvent their own warranty policy.
If you believe an auto manufacturer has breached its contractual obligation to repair known defects, contact an experienced attorney.
Source: TopClassActions.com, Ford engine problem class action lawsuit, January 3, 2013