Patrick Rall's picture

Ford Freestyle under NHTSA investigation for unintended lunging

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched an investigation into reports that certain Ford Freestyle crossovers are ‘lunging’ without input of the driver – slightly reminiscent of the acceleration problems plaguing Toyota but with far less severe results.

The NHTSA chose to investigate the 2005-2007 Ford Freestyle after receiving 238 complaints that the crossover was lunging forward at very low speeds when in gear without either the brake or accelerator pedal applied. The complainants pointed out that the brakes being applied stopped the car right away, but if you were sitting with the vehicle in Drive or Reverse and did not have your foot on the brake pedal, the vehicle could suddenly lunge until you had time to react and hit the brakes. Also, reports claim that this lunge could be more severe if the vehicle has the air condition running or if the steering wheel is turned to full lock (all the way to one side).

The consumers who filed these complaints about the 2005-2007 Ford Freestyle claimed that their vehicle suddenly rolled forward, as far as ten feet, and in 18 cases, an accident occurred. In one case, a pedestrian was struck by a vehicle when it lunged in a driveway but the only injury sustained was a bruised knee. This problem differs from those displayed by Toyota in the fact that the Toyota unintended acceleration issues occurred at higher speeds where these Ford problems hitting the Freestyle are occurring only at low speeds - speeds at which the vehicle is easily controlled and stopped by the brake pedal.

This 2005-2007 Ford Freestyle investigation applies to around 170,000 vehicles and should the NHTSA find some sort of fault with the Freestyle to cause these unintended lunging problems, Ford could be forced to issue a recall to address the issues. The number of additional complaints that come in coupled with the NHTSA findings will help Ford and the Feds decide whether or not a recall is necessary.

TorqueNews.com will bring you more news as it becomes available!

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Ford continues to grow while Lincoln struggles in April 2011


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Comments

I have experienced this too, almost hit the car in front of me, I just took my foot off the brake and it lunged forward. I also almost hit a man crossing in front of me when I took my foot off the brake at the bank... It happens alot. Please email when this gets recalled. Thank you!
I have had a problem with my 2007 Ford Freestyle too. It lunges in both forward and reverse. I have had it fixed once and it did well for around 6 months and now it is doing the same thing. I have also noticed when it does this the tool light comes on, and the transmission is very rough. Hopefully they will recall it and the dealers will know how to fix it. Otherwise I love the car. Thanks
I have the same problem. I took my car in and was told that the failing part isn’t manufactured anymore. Ford is currently working with a new vendor to produce the part. It was suppose to be completed last September. However, they keep telling me they're behind. The cost to replace it is $900.
HELLO, I HAVE ALSO HAD MINE FIXED JUST THIS YEAR. I HAVE AN EXPERIENCED MECHANIC THAT FIXED IT FOR $200 CHEAPER THAN THE FORD DEALERSHIP.
I have 2005 Freestyle and it lunges too, always wonder why.... does anyone that has a Freestyle, have a problem with there A/C mine makes whistling sounds always has
My 2005 lunges and surges had to replace ac about 200 miles out of warranty. On way to shop now has been 3 time in a month.
Just this past weekend while backing out of my driveway my car jerked and accelerate faster then I wanted to go and my daughter said “ mom what are you doing” I said “it’s not me it’s the car” now after reading this it all makes sense. If this is going to cause harm to myself or others, Ford should do something about this and not wait until there is a law suit. My family has been purchasing Ford’s for many years and believes they are good reliable car’s, and are thinking of purchasing another for our daughter but might have to change our mines. Please do the recall…
We have a 2007 Ford Expedition EL and we experienced a lunging problem that resulted in hitting our home & causing severe damage. If anyone else out there has had this problem with that model of vehicle, please reply.
I have a 2007 Ford Mustang and it does the same thing.
I have a 2006 Ford Freestyle and had the same lunging problem. Ford replaced the part for around $800.00. I have had to replace the transmission when my car had less than 36,000 miles on it as well as another part that cost me $$600.00. Today, my air conditioner compressor has gone out and Ford estimated that it will cost between $1,600-$2,000 to repair. This car has been nothing but trouble. There was a recall on the brakes after we had already replaced them. Ridiculous. I pay my last car payment on the 30th of this month!!! Don't think I will be buying a Ford anytime soon!
I have been battling this issue with my 2006 Ford Freestyle for about a year. This has been going on for awhile. I have replaced three AC compressors the still battling the AC issues. It sometimes starts to shut off during my drive. I also replaced my main torque mount due to the shaking of the steering wheel.
Everything I have read about this issue points to the throttle body. I have heard some people have replaced it and others have had it taken off and cleaned. From what I have read that seems to have eliminated the problem.
We have a 06 Freestyle. About a week before this was announced on the news my car took off while I was backing out of a parking space. It is happening more and more and I can not afford to spend anymore on this car than I all ready have. If I could trade it in I would but I am stuck with it. Is there a number we can call to let the NHTSA that our car is doing this?
We have a 06 Freestyle. About a week before this was announced on the news my car took off while I was backing out of a parking space. It is happening more and more and I can not afford to spend anymore on this car than I all ready have. If I could trade it in I would but I am stuck with it. Is there a number we can call to let the NHTSA that our car is doing this?
We are having the same problem. We just had the transmission replaced by the Ford dealer because it was slipping when changing gears. Still have the same problem. We had the same problem even before the transmissiion was changed. Oh Yea!! NO ONE but a Ford dealer can get a new or used transmission for theses cars. Tha transmission will cost you $6000.00 for a rebuilt one. Thats what I said: $6000.00. We are also having problems with the engine acting like it has lost all of its vacume at times. The engine shakes, rumbles, etc. When this happens you can put the gas pedal to the floor but the rpm does not change and you go no where. You have to shut the car off then wait for the problem to clear. You also get indications: Engine Fail Safe Mode and Engine Check Light along with pictures of a wrench and engine on the dash board.
Had a similar issue and simply removed the throttle body,cleaned it with a toothbrush and throttle-body cleaner and voila, good as new. Your dealer will gladly charge you $950.00 to unnecessarily replace the throttle body. It's easier for them to replace it than to take the 20 minutes it takes to clean it. It cost me about $8.00 and 40 minutes!
Had a similar issue and simply removed the throttle body,cleaned it with a toothbrush and throttle-body cleaner and voila, good as new. Your dealer will gladly charge you $950.00 to unnecessarily replace the throttle body. It's easier for them to replace it than to take the 20 minutes it takes to clean it. It cost me about $8.00 and 40 minutes!
Had a similar issue and simply removed the throttle body,cleaned it with a toothbrush and throttle-body cleaner and voila, good as new. Your dealer will gladly charge you $950.00 to unnecessarily replace the throttle body. It's easier for them to replace it than to take the 20 minutes it takes to clean it. It cost me about $8.00 and 40 minutes!
Had a similar issue and simply removed the throttle body,cleaned it with a toothbrush and throttle-body cleaner and voila, good as new. Your dealer will gladly charge you $950.00 to unnecessarily replace the throttle body. It's easier for them to replace it than to take the 20 minutes it takes to clean it. It cost me about $8.00 and 40 minutes!
Were having the same problem, we can't afford to get it repaired as we are in our 70's and limited income, but my better half and I have done many car repairs.could you please tell us how to remove the throttle body, I have been unable to find directions I would appreciate it greatly. Thanks, Milie
My transmission is looking like it will need to be replaced as well. I have a 2005 Ford Freestyle with 65,000 miles on it and the service manager told me he wasn't aware of any problems and that it was a great transmission. The only reason Ford stopped using it was the cost, which if there are no problems shouldn't be an issue right?
my car lunges forward and the wrench light &the check engine light comes on, somtimes the engine cuts off .shows power train fault.
Our 2005 has that same issue of lunging. I have noticed it becomming far more frequent as I get more miles on the vehicle. We have 160000 on the car and it is a wonderful car I would not trade it for any other but this is a scarry safety issue. Is Ford going to do a recal on this problem?
my 2006 freestyle is lunging when setting at a light, It just started also doing this in reverse also. Lunging when I am reversing and I brake and the car dies, the chech engine light is now on.
My car is in the shop today with the same problems for a total repair bill of $850.00. Would be nice to get a refund for a problem that according to the mechanice there wasn't anything that I did or didn't do to cause this problem.
Same problem here. Just had it in the shop on an extended warranty and was told the problem is not part of the "drive train warranty coverage" so the bill ended up being 800 or so because the part is about 600. I hope this investigation results in a recall...then I can get my $ back!!
BUT...It ended up being the throttle body...if that helps any one. Smooth sailing now!!
My 2007 freestyle does the same exact thing, lunges forward, wrench light and engine light come on and sometimes it stalls. Usually happens in the summer time when it gets very hot here in Arlington, tx.
My 2005 Freestyle has "lugged" instead of "lunged" if that's make sense. Does anyone know where we file a complain so we will know if there is a recall?
Contact the NHTSA @ 1-888-327-4236 and file a complaint with them. This will helpour cases.

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