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Ford being sued for using faulty F Series fuel tanks

There was a lawsuit filed on Wednesday in a New Jersey federal court alleging that Ford Motor Company knowingly sold trucks and sport utility vehicles that were equipped with fuel tank linings that could deteriorate over time and causing other fuel system problems.
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According to the legal paperwork, New Jersey-based Coba Landscaping and Construction Inc is suing Ford Motor Company because Ford F Series pickups and E Series full sized vans sold between 1999 and 2008 were supposedly built with fuel tanks that had faulty linings. Over time, these linings would deteriorate and fall apart; with the loose particles of rust finding their way into the fuel lines and fuel filters. Once enough of this crud would build up in the fuel system, it would cause the truck or van to buck or suddenly stall.

The lawsuit paperwork goes on to state that Ford Motor Company issued a “secret” technical service bulletin to dealerships about the possible F Series and E Series fuel tank problems but there was never any official recall or offer to fix the problem. The complaint insists that “hundreds, if not thousands” of people were affected by this issue.

The exact monetary figure being sought by the plaintiffs has not been disclosed but the lawsuit states that the suing party seeks “compensatory, punitive and triple damages” for fraud, breech of warranty and unjust enrichment. For those not familiar with that last term, unjust enrichment is when one party is being sued for benefiting essentially through wrongdoing towards another party. In this case (again in theory, according to the lawsuit), Ford Motor Company profited from selling faulty trucks and not incurring the expenses of a recall – so they have made money unjustly. The fraud charge likely relates to the idea that Ford knew about the problem but did nothing about it and the breech of warranty portion of the lawsuit is pretty self explanatory.

A portion of the Ford F Series trucks and E Series vans possibly included in this lawsuit of Coba et al v. Ford Motor Company have been involved in a fuel tank recall but that related to the fuel tank straps rusting and failing in areas where lot of salt is used to fight ice on winter roads. It will be interesting to see how this case pans out, as if the federal court finds that Ford has indeed failed to handle this alleged fuel tank issue properly, it could cost them in more than one way.

The Ford F Series has been the bestselling vehicle in the US market for a long time – including the years name in the lawsuit. If the plaintiffs in this class action suit are awarded money, it could get to be a very, very expensive case for Ford Motor Company. Also, if the courts rule in favor of the plaintiffs, you have to wonder if the NHTSA might begin looking into the problem themselves. If they find that there is indeed an issue with the fuel tanks that can lead to stalling on the open road, there could conceivably be a recall for what would likely be well over a million trucks and full sized vans.

TorqueNews will continue following this story, bringing you any updates as they become available.

Source: Reuters


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Comments

How many trucks have been affected? We bought 3 new Ford LCF45 straight from the dealer, all ran great until one by one they started to stall in traffic, idle poorly, die at highway speeds in traffic, not start, stall while idling, etc. Ford happily replaced injectors on one of them. This is a very expensive repair to incur if they were not at fault? Interesting that most LCF owners probably have not even read the TSB that came from Ford. Ford has ignored the issue, refused buy back the destroyed trucks, never replaced any of our fuel tanks, fuel pumps, injectors on 2 trucks, fuel lines, etc... This is now becoming a huge mess for them to clean up. It's always best that a company take care of it's customers from the start, such as recall the part(s) and fix it. I'm sure it was not a "profitable" move and that is why they have waited until now to address it. :( Too bad it had to become a public matter before they stepped up to "FIX IT".. my 2 cents... Bobby
What.. truck and car parts being made out of a metal that... er... rusts? Oh my, how could they possible do that? Wait... they use steel in the manufacture of vehicles? Steel? Can you believe that? We should create a law that makes it illegal for steel to rust. That would totally fix the problem. It would require a change in the laws of physics, but that's what laws are for, right? I thought that Ford gave the buyers a warranty... after the warranty period some parts wear out. When things wear out, you fix them, or buy another vehicle. Am I missing something?
Poster i can see right away that you don't own a NEW Ford truck or you won't be so sarcastic. I know for a fact that Ford is doing everything and anything that they could get away with. I do own a new Ford $60.000.00 F350, been sitting in the dealer repair shop for about 2 months now. When big companies like Ford cut costs and put inferior parts and materials in your vehicles that cost you a lot of money, time, inconveniences in your life and household or even pain suffering or even death, it should be illegal. They should be held accountable for what types of material that they use. If they were held accountable they just wouldn't do it and take the chance because of the consequences. In our everyday lives we see and use different types of metal, some may start to rust almost immediately when it got wet and some may take years to start rusting. If the person filing the court case didn't have evidence, I don't believe that they would have initiated the case against Ford and I wish then well.
"If ther person filing the court case didn't have evidence, I don't believe that they would have initiated the case against Ford..." Are you serious?! Dude, we live in America where people are sued every single day without evidence. The courts have a backlog of trials to attend to because people sue corporations everyday over even the smallest of details! I drove a Ford as my first car, a '99 Taurus and loved the car. It to began to "buck" towards the end of it's life but in their defense, the tranny was shot. Like the poster says two posts up, fuel tanks are made from metal. Inevitably, over time, metal rusts. It is a fact of life. More based on the laws of chemistry than physics but whatever. The point is, the company can make the car out of whatever they want. When you buy it they give a warranty, after that warranty is up, tough luck it's your problem. Is that the best corporate policy, absolutely not, morally is it the wrong thing to do, maybe let corporations today lack morals entirely. Is it illegal though, no!
what a joke we give them billons in bailout money and they give us camaros that trannies break backing out of driveways, corvettes that the tops fly off ,cruzes that the steeringwheels fall off while driving them then full size trucks that the pins in the rearaxle breaks and locks up the rearend then sonics with no brake pads then volts that burn up and countless other recalled junks just in 2011. and the best we americans can come up with is to sue ford for rust in the fuel tanks caused by the stations we buy high dollar watered down gas from..... only in america.
I have a 1999 E 150 Van with the same 35 mid-line gas tank as the same make year and model as the Ambulance that has a recall for faulty gas tanks-they are cracking leaking fuel, and yet my vehicle is not part of the the recall. The recall stated in 2001 so it is not a new problem it just took my tank longer to crack, maybe because I do city driving and only have 118,000 miles on it.
I have a 1999 E 150 Van with the same 35 mid-line gas tank as the same make year and model as the Ambulance that has a recall for faulty gas tanks-they are cracking leaking fuel, and yet my vehicle is not part of the the recall. The recall stated in 2001 so it is not a new problem it just took my tank longer to crack, maybe because I do city driving and only have 118,000 miles on it.
I have a 1999 E 150 Van with the same 35 mid-line gas tank as the same make year and model as the Ambulance that has a recall for faulty gas tanks-they are cracking leaking fuel, and yet my vehicle is not part of the the recall. The recall stated in 2001 so it is not a new problem it just took my tank longer to crack, maybe because I do city driving and only have 118,000 miles on it.