DETROIT — Ford is extending the warranties on about 560,000 small cars in the U.S. and Canada to cover a litany of problems with a troubled six-speed automatic transmission.
The company has faced a string of lawsuits and complaints about the transmissions, which can lurch into gear or feel like they are slipping.
The latest move covers 2014 through 2016 model year Focuses built before Nov. 5, 2015, as well as 2014 and 2015 Fiestas built before Oct. 15, 2014.
It extends clutch warranties to seven years or 100,000 miles, while the warranty on the transmission control computer goes to 10 years or 150,000 miles. Ford also will reimburse customers in this group who paid for clutch repairs out of their own pockets, and it’s giving owners of older Focuses and Fiestas another chance to get a free transmission software update.
The extension, coupled with previous Ford actions, means that all Focuses and Fiestas built before the second half of 2015 will get the extended warranties. The company says fixes were made at the factory for cars built after that time.
It’s another development in a long string of problems with the Ford transmissions, which have resulted in a lawsuit settlement in the U.S. and a fine in Australia. In 2017, Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford settled a class-action lawsuit and agreed to pay owners of 2012 to 2016 Focus and 2011 to 2016 Fiesta cars up to $2,325. Those who paid for repairs could also be reimbursed in the complex settlement.