California Lemon Law News + Info

Ford Engineer on the DPS6 Transmission: “I Wouldn’t Put My Kid in One of Those Cars.”

Engineers involved in the development of the 6 Speed Dual Clutch Automatic (DPS6) transmissions installed in 2011–2016 Ford Fiesta and 2012–2016 Ford Focus vehicles thought that the transmission design was a “mechanical catastrophe.” In spite of this, Ford told them to keep quiet.

ford vehicle“We’d raise our hands and be told, ‘Don’t be naysayers,’” a key engineer told Detroit Free Press. “We got strange comments. It seemed the ship had sailed. After that, if you ask questions, you’re accused of mutiny, so you put your head down and make it work. Good people tried to make it work. But you can’t violate the laws of physics.”

The transmission system was advertised to have improved fuel economy, the efficiency of a manual transmission, and the ease of an automatic transmission. The transmission was equipped not with a torque converter, as one would find in an automatic transmission, but instead a dual-clutch system.

To increase efficiency, Ford opted to use a dry clutch – a decision criticized by engineers.

“What in the world are you thinking going with a dry clutch?” one engineer asked. “The friction coefficient is inconsistent and it creates problems. But this was someone’s baby. If a manager came up with an idea, people would be afraid to say no. At first, it was just on paper. Someone should have said something. They should have. The idea should’ve been killed.”

By the time problems appeared in transmissions, Ford had already spent a lot of money on the project. Fixes to this transmission would be particularly expensive, noted one engineer. In spite of these recurring issues, Ford released the lineups anyway.

One of Ford’s mechanical experts warned close friends about the dangers of the vehicle.

“I told one friend that if he loved his stepdaughter, he’d get her out of that Fiesta as quick as possible,” the expert told Detroit Free Press. “I wouldn’t put my kid in one of those cars.”

Lemon Law Help by Knight Law Group is an automotive lemon law firm that exclusively practices in California. If you are a California resident who purchased or leased a defective vehicle from a licensed dealership in California, we may be able to help you get rid of your potential lemon and recover significant cash compensation. Model year restrictions apply: 2017–Present vehicle models only.

However, we cannot help those who reside outside of California or purchased their vehicle outside of California unless they are active duty members of the Armed Forces, nor will we be able to refer those to a lemon law firm in their states.

To learn more about the California Lemon Law and your legal rights, visit our guides on the California Lemon Law and Used Car Lemon Law for more information.

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