Australian Ford 'misled customers on faults'

Australian Ford 'misled customers on faults'

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is taking action in the Federal Court against Ford Motor Company of Australia over its handling of customers who had problems with Ford Focus, Fiesta and EcoSport vehicles with a PowerShift transmission bought between 2011 and 2016.

Declining sales locally in the light vehicle market and shifting logistics for the next Ford Fiesta may see Australia struck off the list of destinations for the all-new model. These include excessive shuddering or jerking during acceleration, loss of gear selection and even sudden loss of power, which persisted even after multiple repairs. It is also alleged that in most cases Ford refused to provide a refund or a replacement vehicle unless customers participated in the Powershift Ownership Loyalty Program by making a substantial payment for a replacement vehicle, which was on average $7000.

'The ACCC alleges that Ford's conduct towards customers who had complained of issues with their vehicles was unconscionable'.

Even when customers did pay for replacements under the "PowerShift Ownership Loyalty Program", Ford took the faulty cars and sold them on to other wholesalers and customers.

The watchdog has made allegations including that Ford refused to give refunds or replacement vehicles and blamed customers' driving for transmission problems in the cars despite being aware of "systemic issues" from at least 2013.

'The ACCC urges all vehicle manufacturers to ensure their complaints handling processes provide the remedies that consumers are entitled to get under the Australian Consumer Law or, like Ford, they will find themselves in court, ' Mr Sims said.

The "PowerShift Ownership Loyalty Program" closely resembles a dodgy extended warranty agreement, where the vehicle seller essentially tells the customer to pay for the protection that they are already entitled to under Australian consumer law.

More news: UnitedHealth Group's (NYSE:UNH) "Outperform" Rating Reiterated at Sanford C. Bernstein
More news: UNC athletics has its date with the NCAA's Committee on Infractions
More news: Express Scripts Holding Company (ESRX) Position Raised by Pacer Advisors Inc

The ACCC is seeking declarations, injunctions, pecuniary penalties, consumer redress orders, corrective advertising, and compliance program obligations.

But Ford has hit back at the allegations and defended its actions in looking after customers with affected gearboxes.

But Ford has refuted the ACCC's position and while acknowledging there are problems with the transmission, it handled the repairs and replacements appropriately.

"We acknowledge that some customers had a poor experience when the clutch shudder issues on the PowerShift transmission first came to light and we are sorry for this", said Ford Australia president, Graeme Whickman.

The auto giant then allegedly refused to provide refunds or replacement vehicles between 2011 and May 2015, even after the vehicles had undergone multiple unsuccessful repairs.

CarAdvice has a long-running trend of readers complaining about their PowerShift transmissions, and has a significant explainer on what customers should do - and what their rights are under the Australian Consumer Law.

  • Wasserman Schultz aide arrested trying to leave the country

    Wasserman Schultz aide arrested trying to leave the country

    The Daily Caller reported Monday that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had seized smashed hard drives from Awan's home. Authorities had been watching him for months as part of an investigation into information and equipment theft.
    Fredette Re-Signs with Shanghai Sharks

    Fredette Re-Signs with Shanghai Sharks

    Fredette quickly became a fan favorite in Shanghai, and was nicknamed "Jimo Dashen", which translated roughly means the "Lonely Master".
    Did the TSA Ban Comic-Con Fans From Bringing Home Comic Books?

    Did the TSA Ban Comic-Con Fans From Bringing Home Comic Books?

    But The Verge points to a set of TSA travel tips from last year's Comic-Con that may have led to the United mishap. There, United had posted a sign, "Comic-con attendees, remove all books from your checked bags".
  • AFC approves Indian Super League, terms it 'temporary solution'

    AFC approves Indian Super League, terms it 'temporary solution'

    Several requirements, including attendance at matches, game operation, stadia and media regulations are to be strictly adhered by the affiliated clubs.
    Warriors Finalise Signings Of Curry, Durant And Others

    Warriors Finalise Signings Of Curry, Durant And Others

    On Tuesday, NBA champion Golden State announced its other signings of returning free agents. For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website .

    Short Interest in Penn National Gaming, Inc (NASDAQ:PENN) Increases By 35

    BlueMar Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in Penn National Gaming during the first quarter valued at $808,000. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the stock.
  • Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST) Position Held by Fruth Investment Management

    Lmr Prns Llp has invested 0.18% of its portfolio in Waters Corporation (NYSE:WAT). 488 are owned by National Bank Of Montreal Can. It increased, as 59 investors sold COST shares while 405 reduced holdings. 116 funds opened positions while 395 raised stakes.

    NY Has $10.91 Million Position in Devon Energy Corporation (NYSE:DVN)

    Deltec Asset Management LLC divested its position by shedding 2,000 shares a decrease of 18.6% from 03/31/2017 to 06/30/2017. It improved, as 48 investors sold DVN shares while 271 reduced holdings. 72 funds opened positions while 223 raised stakes.
    With 4.6 billion plays, 'Despacito' is the most streamed song in history

    With 4.6 billion plays, 'Despacito' is the most streamed song in history

    But not even Justin Bieber himself, whose guest verses turned this into a monster hit, knows the lyrics. The government has downplayed the referendum and has continued its plans for the constituent assembly.
  • Crown Castle International Corporation (NYSE:CCI) Downgraded to "Hold" at BidaskClub

    Ledyard National Bank bought 37,492 shares as the company's stock rose 11.44% with the market. 11,409 were reported by Scotia Inc. When the trading finished on 07/24/2017, shares of AGNC Investment Corp. (REIT) (NYSE:CCI) was sold by GARRISON ROBERT E II.
    Hero MotoCorp Q1 net up 3% on higher sales

    Hero MotoCorp Q1 net up 3% on higher sales

    The company sold 18.5 lakh units in the period, a 6% growth over 17.4 lakh units in the same period last fiscal. Earnings before Interest, Depreciation, Tax and Amortization (EBITDA) for the quarter stood at ₹ 1295.9 crore.

    CatchMark Timber Trust (NYSE:CTT) Earning Somewhat Favorable Press Coverage, Report Finds

    Bank of New York Mellon Corp owned 0.70% of CatchMark Timber Trust worth $3,111,000 at the end of the most recent quarter. Want to see what other hedge funds are holding CTT? New York State Teachers Retirement System reported 3,400 shares.