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The Feds Are Getting Involved With Ford's Faulty Transmissions

Investigation

The investigation continues, perhaps on the next level.

It’s been an issue for Ford for years now and it simply won’t go away. Quite the opposite. Ever since the Detroit Free Press published an extensive investigation report detailing the faulty history of the dual-clutch transmission found in the Fiesta and Focus, even more dissatisfied owners have come forward complaining about reliability issues, shuddering, jerks, and shift hesitations.

Ford responded to the Free Press’s report and the publication then responded to Ford with accurate details. Also, Ford promised dealers further guidance as to how to work with these customers by July 19. So far nothing. "Ford did not even send out an update on July 19 like it said it would do in that first bulletin,” said one Ford service manager who wishes to remain anonymous.

None of Ford’s 3,100 dealers have an update for customers. What’s the big deal about all of this? The Free Press’s investigation found that the automaker knowingly sold both vehicles with defective transmissions. Since then, a few members of Congress have called for an immediate review of the situation by regulators.

Earlier this week, the Free Press asked the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) whether or not it’ll investigate the matter. The agency replied that it is "reviewing all available information, including complaints filed from consumers.” Consumers can also contact the agency with any additional information regarding the vehicles.

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Ford did respond to the Free Press’s report stating the dual-clutch, also known as the DPS6, "was all-new technology from Getrag when it was introduced nearly a decade ago to improve fuel economy in Fiesta and Focus models. We launched those vehicles in good faith -- like others, only after they reached key development milestones. Quality issues emerged after they were on the road. We acted quickly and determinedly to address those issues. Resolving them took longer than we expected -- that frustrated and was inconvenient for many customers, some still today, which we regret. Along the way, we have rightly gone to great lengths to correct the problems: understanding what caused them, alerting dealers and consumers, recommending and making repairs, and extending warranties. In the meantime, automobiles using the DPS6 transmission were and remain safe to drive.”

If the NHTSA determines it to be necessary, a forced recall will be anything but cheap for Ford.

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