Class Action

 

Ford Dual Clutch Transmission Class Action Lawsuit

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Ford PowerShift Transmission Defect

Charney Lawyers has commenced a national class action in Toronto against Ford Motor Company and Ford Motor Company of Canada Limited (hereinafter "Ford") on behalf of all residents of Canada who purchased or leased a Ford Fiesta motor vehicle for the model years 2011 to 2016 and all residents of Canada who purchased or leased a Ford Focus motor vehicle for the model years 2012 to 2016 manufactured by Ford equipped with a PowerShift dual clutch transmission.

 

This lawsuit is only on behalf of Canadian residents.

 

 

The Claims Period commenced on June 26, 2019. You are now able to submit a claim, to access the forms please click here.

 

 

What is the Deadline to Make a Claim?

 

To claim cash payments or discount certificates for transmission hardware replacements (THRs) and software flashes which have already occurred, your Claim Form must be submitted online or postmarked by December 23, 2019. For THRs and software flashes which occur in the future (up to seven years or 160,000 kilometres after the warranty start date), your Claim Form must be submitted online or postmarked within 180 days of the service visit.

 

To claim for Alternative Benefits:

 

  • if your Class Vehicle has had, or in the future will have, two or three eligible THRs while you continue to own or lease it, your Claim Form must be submitted online or postmarked by the later of December 23, 2019 or within seven years or 160,000 kilometres of the warranty start date;
  • if your Class Vehicle has had, or in the future will have, four or more eligible THRs while you continue to own or lease it, your Claim Form must be submitted online or postmarked by the later of December 23, 2019 or within six years of the warranty start date.

 

 

Update:

 

2019.06.26: The Claims Period commenced on June 26, 2019. You are now able to submit a claim, to access the forms please click here.

2019.05.16: Justice Morgan's signed order varying the order dated March 21, 2019 that approved the settlement can be found here.

 

2019.05.15: CBC reports on Ford settlement. Read article here.

 

2019.05.02: Justice Morgan's signed order approving the settlement and class counsel fees can be found here.

 

2019.04.09: The settlement has been approved by the Superior Court of Justice. The reasons can be found here.

 

2019.03.20: The settlement approval motion was heard on March 18, 2019. We are waiting on the judge's decision and will post the decision once we receive it.

 

2019.01.11: Quebec Superior Court grants application to suspend the application for authorization to institute a class action in Quebec. The Ontario national class action settlement approval hearing will be heard on March 18, 2019.

The decision can be found here.

 

2018.11.29: Ford Dual Clutch Transmission Class Action has settled subject to court approval

 

Please note on November 13, 2018 a judge of the Superior Court of Justice certified the Ford Dual Clutch Transmission class action for settlement purposes and approved a draft short form and long form notice, as well as a Notice Program to inform class members of the proposed settlement. The final version of the short-form and long-form notices can be accessed from the link set out below. The term sheet evidencing the settlement can also be accessed below.

 

For more information please see the settlement website: http://www.fordtransmissionclassaction.com/

 

The Order of the Court certifying the class action for settlement purposes, together with the Schedules to the Order can be accessed here.

 

The short-form notice can be be accessed here.

The French version can be accessed here.

 

The long-form notice can be be accessed here.

The French version can be accessed here.

 

The term sheet can be accessed here.

 

A list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) can be found here.

The French version can be found here.

 

2018.11.26: Court certifies class action against Ford. Read the decision here.

 

 

2017.11.08: Court dismisses Merchant Law Group request to intervene in Ontario certification motion. A copy of the decision can be read here.

 

The lawsuit seeks compensation of $825 million for a defect contained in the PowerShift dual clutch transmission, which causes drivers of these vehicles to experience transmission slips, kicking, jerking, harsh engagement, sudden acceleration, delay in downshifts, delayed accelerations, the inability to accelerate, difficulty stopping the vehicle, and difficulty climbing elevated grades.

In the lawsuit, it is alleged that the PowerShift dual clutch transmission is offered as the sole automatic option in Ford Fiesta motor vehicles for the model years 2011 to 2016, and Ford Focus motor vehicles for the model years 2012 to 2016, and is marketed by Ford as a more advanced and fuel efficient hybrid between a manual transmission and an automatic transmission.

The PowerShift dual clutch transmission is essentially two manual transmissions working in parallel, each with its own independent clutch unit.

To date, a total of over 145,000 Ford Fiesta motor vehicles for the model years 2011 to 2016, and Ford Focus motor vehicles for the model years 2012 to 2016 have been sold in Canada.

It is alleged in the lawsuit that drivers of these vehicles have consistently experienced transmission slips, kicking, jerking, harsh engagement, sudden acceleration, delay in downshifts, delayed accelerations, the inability to accelerate, difficulty stopping the vehicle, and difficulty climbing elevated grades. The alleged cause of these hazardous movements or lack thereof is a defect in the PowerShift dual clutch transmission. The defect affects the driver's ability to control the vehicle's speed, to prevent it from lurching forward, acceleration and deceleration.

It is alleged in the lawsuit that to date, Ford has not acknowledged that the defect exists nor have they recalled the vehicles. It has come to the attention of Charney Lawyers that a service manager at a leading Ford dealership is of the opinion that the transmissions in the Ford Fiesta and Ford Focus motor vehicles will not function properly at low speeds. The same manager is also of the opinion that the software update recently offered by Ford will not solve the problem.

Owners of the motor vehicles have inundated Ford dealerships with complaints about the performance of the PowerShift dual clutch transmission. Despite bringing the defect to the attention of the dealerships and despite efforts by the dealerships to correct the problem, it is alleged in the lawsuit that that the problem continues and is likely incapable of repair.

It is alleged in the lawsuit that Ford has known since at least 2011, if not earlier, of the problems associated with the PowerShift dual clutch transmission but Ford does not bring the defective transmission to the attention of purchasers before selling the vehicles.

 

Participation

If you are experiencing a problem with your PowerShift dual clutch transmission, you may be entitled to compensation, including the diminished resale value of your vehicle and/or a refund less reasonable depreciation.

IMPORTANT: All personal information provided to Charney Lawyers through the webform will be held strictly confidential.

If you are experiencing a defect in the transmission causing you to believe that your vehicle is unsafe, you may wish to file a complaint with Transport Canada.

This lawsuit is only on behalf of Canadian residents. Please do not register if you live outside of Canada.

 

Contact US


We encourage you to contact us with any questions about this class action.

 

 

Contact Kiara Sancler at Charney Lawyers

416-964-7950

 

Court Documents

Plaintiff's Certification Record:

Tab Document Date
1 Notice of Motion April 13, 2017
2 Affidavit of Rebecca Romeo March 30, 2017
3 Affidavit of Joe Romeo March 30, 2017
4 Affidavit of Diane Beland March 31, 2017
5 Affidavit of Elyse Choiniere April 3, 2017
6 Affidavit of Linda Goodman April 3, 2017
7 Affidavit of Tracy Corsi March 29, 2017
8 Affidavit of George Brazeau March 31, 2017
9 Affidavit of Jo-Lynn Butt April 7 2017
10 Affidavit of Lee A. Dowdell April 6, 2017
11 Affidavit of Rosemarie Elizabeth Ferguson April 6, 2017
12 Affidavit of Joyce Gervais March 30, 2017
13 Affidavit of Bruce Lamb March 28, 2017
14 Affidavit of Elizabeth Magee April 7, 2017
15 Roar Engineering Report November 29, 2016
16 Roar Engineering Addendum Letter April 7, 2017
17 Bigelow Accident Reconstruction Test Driving Report March 31, 2017
18 Affidavit of Edward M. Stockton [Fontana Report] April 7, 2017
19 Berkeley Research Group Report April 13, 2017
20 Affidavit of Glenn Brandys April 13, 2017
21 Affidavit of Glenn Brandys July 26, 2017

 

Charney Lawyers: Canada’s Top Class Action Lawyers

Charney Lawyers is one of Canada’s leaders in class action litigation. We are prosecuting numerous class actions across Canada. These include the Ashley Madison Class Action, the CHL Class Action, the Falling Glass Class Action and the Emerald City Class Action..

The Ford PowerShift dual clutch transmission defect may be ideally suited to class proceedings because many Canadians were affected in the same way. A class proceeding would allow all Canadian users to access justice without each hiring their own lawyers. All Canadian users would be represented by a small team of lawyers who would be paid out of the settlement or court awards. Any users who do not wish to be represented will be able to opt-out.

Further Background on Ford PowerShift Transmission Defect


The PowerShift Dual Clutch Transmission manufactured, designed, and assembled by Ford Motor Company and Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited is marketed as an automatic transmission with the fuel efficiency of a manual gearbox. According to Ford Social, the PowerShift dual clutch transmission consists of two manual transmissions, each working one independent, dry clutch unit. Gear changes are coordinated between the clutches, which provide uninterrupted torque. The dry clutches do not require oil pumps and/or a torque converter, enabling the vehicles that contain these transmissions to be more fuel efficient. The transmission contains Torque Hole Filling (THF) technology to fill the torque hole, which Ford defines as the slight hesitation drivers may feel during an upshift when there is a momentary drop in transmission torque output followed by a rise in torque.

People who purchased the vehicles have encountered a variety of problems with the PowerShift dual clutch transmissions which the drivers all have experienced in common. Purchasers have registered thousands of complaints about the PowerShift dual clutch transmission on the United States' National Highway Traffic Safety Administration complaints registry. A review of these complaints demonstrates that the vast majority have experienced identical problems with the transmission since the inception of the PowerShift dual clutch transmission in 2011.

Consumers filed 38 complaints about the PowerShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Fiesta motor vehicles for the 2011 model year on carcomplaints.com. Consumers filed 16 complaints about the PoweShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Fiesta motor vehicles for the 2012 model year on carcomplaints.com. Consumers filed 73 complaints about the PoweShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Fiesta motor vehicles for the 2013 model year on carcomplaints.com. Consumers filed 26 complaints about the PoweShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Fiesta motor vehicles for the 2014 model year on carcomplaints.com.

Consumers filed 132 complaints about the PowerShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Focus motor vehicles for the 2012 model year on carcomplaints.com. Consumers filed 116 complaints about the PowerShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Focus motor vehicles for the 2013 model year on carcomplaints.com. Consumers filed 95 complaints about the PowerShift dual clutch transmission contained in Ford Focus motor vehicles for the 2014 model year on carcomplaints.com.

Media on Ford PowerShift Transmission Defect

Jalopnik, a blog about motor vehicles and the automobile industry, reported on March 3, 2011 that Ford was quietly replacing the PowerShift transmission contained in 2011 Ford Fiesta models in response to a variety of complaints, such as hard shifts at speed, the failure to engage any gear and transmission failures. At that time, Ford issued a Technical Service Bulletin to dealerships in response to complaints of hard starts, no starts, intermittent starts, noise from belthousing during starts and/or various automatic transmission engagement concerns that called for a software update for the transmission and scraping paint away from under the battery's ground screw to strengthen connection.

Ward's Auto reported on July 12, 2011, that Ford distributed memos to dealerships containing instructions to inform salespeople and service personnel about the behavioral nuances of the transmission. According to Ford, the transmission performs as intended but the problems stemmed from customers comparing the PowerShift dual clutch transmissions to the conventional automatic transmission.

Ford has consistently issued Technical Service Bulletins to the dealerships but has failed to date to sufficiently notify drivers of the entirety of the defect.

The New York Times reviewed the Ford vehicles containing the PowerShift dual clutch transmission in an article dated July 15, 2011 entitled "Such a Slick Package, but Gearbox is a Drag", and noted that "the transmission is often in the wrong geat at the wrong time, resulting in jerks, pauses and lethargic acceleration."

As a result of performance issues with the PowerShift dual clutch transmission in the 2011 Fiesta and the 2012 Focus, Ford's rating in the Consumer Reports 2011 reliability survey declined. At that time, the subject of the complaints centered around the transmission's lack of or delay in response during stop-and-go driving, and behavior suggesting that the engine would stall according to an article in the New York Times dated October 26, 2011.

The position of Ford vehicles in the Consumer Reports 2012 reliability survey took a larger hit, falling 7 places from the year before. The Wall Street Journal reported on October 26, 2012 that the decline in Ford's rating in the 2012 survey was caused in part by the faulty Powershift Transmission.

WTAE, Pittsburgh's Action News 4, reported on February 6, 2014 that Channel 4 Action News conducted an investigation which found that hundreds of people throughout the United States said that the transmission on recent-model Ford sedans was a safety concern.

In 2014, Local 12 WKRC-TV in Cincinatti, Ohio reported that the PowerShift transmission contained in the 2012, 2013 and 2014 Ford Focus and Ford Fiesta motor vehicles caused problems for owners, such as jerking, sputtering and making grinding noises. Local 12 News attempted to contact a spokesperson for Ford Motor Company but did not hear back. A service manager for a local Ford dealership informed Local 12 that drivers needed to be attune to the fact that they were using a manual transmission, and that noise and hesitation associated with the transmission should be expected. At that time, Ford was updating the software on the transmission control module as well as redesigning the clutch disk in hopes that those repairs would solve the problem. Ford had not recalled the vehicles at the time of the article.

UPDATES:

In a story published October 31, 2016, the CBC reported that Transport Canada opened a “defect investigation” in February 2016 after receiving complaints from Ford Focus and Fiesta owners regarding issues concerning the transmissions. As of October 20, 2016, Transport Canada had received complaints from 128 Canadians regarding these two models of vehicle. Click here to read the story.

In a follow-up story published November 4, 2016, the CBC reported that the number of complaints Transport Canada had received increased to 322, more than doubling in the span of two weeks. Click here to read the story.

On November 21, 2016, the CBC publish the story of a 2013 Ford Focus owner, Jennifer Walsh, who claims that her car hasn't worked properly since she drove it off the sales lot in St. John's two years ago. Read the article here. Click here to watch video of the story.

American Consumer Class Action Lawsuit: Powershift Transmission Defect

In or around early 2015, Capstone Law APC commenced a class action lawsuit on behalf of consumers who purchased or leased any 2011 through 2015 Ford Fiesta or 2012 through 2015 Ford Focus equipped with Ford's Dual Clutch or PowerShift transmission in the United States Discrict Court for the Central District of California. Read more about Capstone Law APC's class action lawsuit here.

Carcomplaints.com reported on January 25, 2015 that the American class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of four plaintiffs, Omar Vargas, Robert Bertone, Michelle Harris and Sharon Heberling, which alleges that the PowerShift transmission was manufactured defective, causing dangerous driving conditions for the drivers of affected Ford vehicles.

On March 24, 2015, Law360 reported that Ford Motor Company knowingly sold hundreds of thousands or Fiestas and Focuses in California that pose a safety risk because they contain defective PowerShift transmissions, according to the proposed class action filed by Capstone Law APC in the United States. Law360 also reported that Ford brought a motion to remove the case to California Federal Court on the basis that the alleged damages exceeded the $5 million statutory minimum in that state.

The Washington Examiner reported on April 8, 2015 that class action status was being sought for a lawsuit commenced against Ford Motor Company over the PowerShift transmission which renders the vehicles containing it "virtually inoperable."

IMPORTANT NOTE:

The site is not designed to answer questions about your individual situation or entitlement. Do not rely upon the information provided on this website as legal advice in respect of your individual situation nor use it as substitute for individual legal advice.

The information collected about potential class members will assist counsel in prosecuting the class action and assessing what damages were suffered by the class as a whole. Providing the information requested does not make you the client of Charney Lawyers. The court will ultimately decide who will be included as a class member.

This website will be updated from time to time to provide potential class members with information as it becomes available.

 

 

Judicial Endorsements

 

“I find that the plaintiff’s counsel presented a well prepared, organized and efficient case… The medical issues were complex. It involved evidence of psychiatrists, physiatrists, orthopaedic surgeons, occupational therapists, future care specialists, vocational alternatives, forensic accounting and quantification of damages. The jury had to be presented with present valuations of past and future loss of income and projections of future care costs."

 

-Giordano v. Li [Ontario Superior Court of Justice, 2015]

Ted Charney represented the plaintiff in this three week personal injury jury trial securing a $900,000 verdict for chronic pain syndrome.


"Charney... is unquestionably qualified to act as counsel."

 

-Ison T Auto Sales v. Zurich Insurance [Ontario Court of Appeal, 2011]

Ted Charney acted for Ison T Auto Sales i.e. Toronto Honda on the appeal.


"The Whiting Group Counsel Team consists of 11 law firms from 7 provinces across Canada and includes some of the most experienced class action firms in Canada with a broad range of experience in class actions with particular expertise in product liability class actions and personal injury. Four of these law firms are in Ontario where the action will be based and includes counsel who are very experienced in class action litigation and have the resources and experience to advance this claim in Ontario or on a national scale. This fact favours the Whiting Group."

 

-Whiting et al v. Menu Foods Income Fund [Ontario Superior Court of Justice, 2007]

Charney Lawyers was a member of the Whiting Group and appeared as counsel on the motion to decide carriage.


"Mr. Charney conducted the Applicant's case in an exemplary and efficient manner, which was to the benefit of all concerned, his clients, the insurer and myself alike."

 

-Amoa-Williams v. Allstate Insurance Co. of Canada [Financial Services Commission of Ontario, 2001]

Ted Charney acted for the insured.


 

 

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