A proposed class action alleges Ford Motor Company has failed to properly identify and pay for certain transmission repairs for partial zero emission and super ultra-low emission vehicles in violation of California’s emissions warranty.
The 34-page case chides Ford for allegedly receiving a 0.2 zeroemissions credit from the California Air Resources Boardwhile failing to cover certain transmission diagnoses, repairs and replacements for 15 years or 150,000 miles, as required by state law for companies who receive emissions credits. The lawsuit calls Ford’s alleged refusal to cover certain emissions-related repairs under California’s warranty requirements a “nefarious scheme” by which the automaker aims to limit its costs and exposure.
According to the lawsuit, “defects” that increase regulated emissions in partial zero or super low emission vehicles are to be covered under the state’semissions warranty– and this includes problems that prompt a vehicle’s check engine light to illuminate. This is the case, the complaint says, because the illumination of a check engine light is not supposed to occur unless a vehicle’s onboard diagnostic system has detected a problem that increases regulated emissions.
“Transmission defects in Class Vehicles increase regulated emissions, cause the MIL to illuminate, and cause the vehicle to fail a California smog check. Therefore, the transmission in Class Vehicles should be covered by the California Emissions Warranty.”
Ford’s apparent failure to provide warranty coverage for emissions-related transmission problems in California has forced drivers to pay out of pocket for repairs that should be covered under the state’s emissions warranty, the lawsuit contends. Further, drivers of partial zero or super low emission Ford vehicles in California have been damaged economically in that they have bought or leased a car with “a deficient warranty that is worth less” than the one to which they were entitled at the time of purchase, the case says.
According to the suit, the list of vehicle parts identified by Ford as covered under California’s emissions warranty was generated by the automaker “for its own financial benefit to save warranty costs.” Ford’s covered-parts list is “woefully inadequate and incomplete and fails to identify, or provide extended warranty coverage for,allof the related parts that, in fact, qualify,” the case says.
As a custom and practice, Ford has, in particular, left out the transmission when determining which emissions-related vehicle components are covered under California’s emissions warranty. Per the case, the transmission issue in the plaintiff’s 2014 Ford Focus caused excessive slippage, a delay in shift time and acceleration, higher-than-normal engine revolutions per minute and an inappropriate shifting pattern, all of which “caused a decrease in fuel economy and an increase in regulated emissions,” the lawsuit says.
The lawsuit aims to represent all persons in California who have owned or leased a partial zero emission or super ultra-low emission Ford vehicle and whose transmissions are not covered under the state’s 15-year or 150,000-mile warranty.
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