The 10-speed automatic transmission was truly a feat in the automotive world when it debuted. A transmission with 10 gears, compared to the 9-, 8- 6- speeds of yore, and potentially the “peak” of transmission development, simply because physics has its limitations. Regardless, the 10-speed created an even more gradual transition between gears to that would allow the engine to be more efficient, smooth, even faster. There’s a reason you can find it in so many vehicles today.
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But like everything ever made, new things come with issues, and growing pains are a part of the process. And Ford has certainly faced the music, and lawsuits, when it comes to its 10R80 transmission. Yet, the saga continues, and as Ford Authority reports, another lawsuit was filed against the Detroit automaker this month, again citing alleged complaints with the operation of the 1080R, and the list of complaints and affected Ford vehicles reads much longer than previous suits.
The lawsuit, McCabe v. Ford Motor Company, was filed April 18 with the Massachusetts State court. In the court filing, lawyers say that Ford vehicle owners have experienced their transmission shifting “harshly and erratically, causing the vehicle to jerk, lunge, clunk and hesitate between gears,” adding “some consumers have even reported experiencing a sudden loss of power while driving their vehicle.”
Those represented in the case say the issues are dangerous and potentially life-threatening. Most problematic, outside of the shifting and bucking is that according to the suit, customers had inquired about the issue, but say Ford had refused to repair it, stating that the “abrupt and harsh shifting is normal.”
From Ford Authority:
Some Ford 10R80 transmission class-action lawsuit plaintiffs say that the clunking noise can be so loud they think other vehicles have hit their trucks to the extent of causing whiplash. According to the lawsuit, Ford allegedly knew or should have known the 10-speed automatic transmissions were defective, and a recall should’ve been issued a long time ago according to the plaintiff. Also, the suit alleges that Ford refuses to properly repair the automatic transmissions when customers complained about harsh shifting.
This new lawsuit claims that Ford is well aware of these issues with the 10R80 transmission, but continues to tell customers that it’s operating normally. “Because of the defect, the class vehicles are likely to suffer serious damages and potentially catch fire if accidents occur, and there is an unreasonable and extreme risk of serious bodily harm or death to the vehicle’s occupants and others in the vicinity,” the suit reads.
Also included in the suit are several pages of complaints sent to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Adminstration (NHTSA) for each problematic vehicle. Those vehicles cited in the suit include the Ford Ranger, Expedition, Mustang, F-150, and Lincoln Navigator for model years 2017 to present. The F-150 complaints alone, spans several pages.
Jalopnik has reached out to Ford for comment and will update if the company provides a response. Although since this is currently pending litigation, Ford may be unable to comment on it at this time
Unfortunately this is not the first, and may not be the last case Ford faces for such an issue. Another lawsuit, filed with the state of Illinois, reads quite similarly to the Massachusetts case, but was later dismissed because because the plaintiff did not produce a “viable state law warranty claim.”