By on July 25, 2007

outlaw.jpgThe court case pitting Ford against engine maker Navistar continues, as both sides wrangle over liability for $800m worth of warranty work performed on Navistar's 6.0-liter diesel. According to Dealer Magazine's resident legal expert, Navistar's looking to lay blame for the big ass bill at the doorstep of Ford dealers for performing unnecessary repairs, failing to follow proper repair procedures and, in some cases, not actually doing claimed repairs. Rich Sox says Navistar's subpoenaed 24 dealers (his clients) in Florida, Georgia, Ohio and Texas requesting thousands of pages of warranty documents. Sox' dealers aren't happy about the prospect of Ford and Navistar pawing over their warranty records– not because they have anything to hide, right? "Of course, we have to be careful how we object to these subpoenas. It would not go over very well with the judge to argue that the warranty records shouldn’t be produced because dealers may have done something wrong." Sox' strategy: resist the legal request on the grounds of confidentiality, inappropriateness (go after Ford first) and, failing all that, squeeze some money from the deal (make sure Navistar pays for the time and expense of assembling the paperwork). And that's why Sox gets the big bucks.   

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7 Comments on “Ford Dealers Sucked Into Navistar Dispute...”


  • avatar
    NickR

    The dealers billed Ford for warranty work they didn’t do? *gasp* If these documents do come out in the open and a bunch of dirty dealer tricks are revealed, it would be ‘deathwatch’ worthy. Word of widespread abuses at dealers is the last thing Ford needs right now.

  • avatar
    928sport

    You don’t really think a dealer would do that?Lets count the reason’s why they would!

  • avatar
    KixStart

    It’s worth clicking the link to the “Dealer” magazine article and reading the rest of it. The author has a few paragraphs on the GM dealer situation, too.

  • avatar
    Hippo

    NickR

    Want to bet that they find what they are looking for?

  • avatar
    Blunozer

    Ford really needs to put this issue behind them. Navistar produces diesel engines for one of Ford’s last true “stranglehold” products… Ambulances.

    No ambulance operator in their right mind is going to want a gas engine in a 100,000 mile/year ambulance. Ford has enjoyed a free pass in the conversion market so far since most after market tooling is specific to the 80’s spec Econoline van. (I’m sure moon windows and shag carpet are still widely available)

    If Ford can’t hear GM and Chrysler (both with excellent van chassis and diesels) salivating, they must be going deaf.

  • avatar
    yankinwaoz

    This doesn’t make any sense.
    (a) Ford let’s their dealers do whatever they want to customers’ diesel motors under warranty.
    (b) Dealer charges Ford the work they did, or claim they did.
    (c) Ford then tries to get Navistar to pay the bill.

    Sounds like extortion to me. No different than the medical billing practice I have to deal with now.

    (a) Wife goes to doctor for routine medical treatment. Is given quote. Is billed by doctor.
    (b) Doctor hires lab to do tests.
    (c) Lab bills my wife directly for work.

    Yet when I question the lab about the excessive work or their prices, they claim I have to pay it. Despite that fact that it was the doctor, not my wife, who chose them as a vendor and ordered their services.

    A scam…

  • avatar
    rpn453

    I feel sorry for diesel engines in pickups. Probably more than half of them are running way above design power levels, with no way for the dealer or manufacturer to prove it. The only person I know with a diesel that isn’t chipped has been towing his 5th wheel camper for 5 years with a 6.0L with zero problems. That said, the Cummins and Duramax seem to have been better designed to handle the extra abuse.

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