Do the Herky-Jerky: Ford's PowerShift Problems Aren't Over

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
do the herky jerky fords powershift problems arent over

Ford Motor Company probably wishes it had gone with a CVT.

After weathering years of complaints about the performance of its six-speed PowerShift dual clutch transmission, Australia just added to the misery with a class-action lawsuit, CarAdvice reports.

The suit, which alleges the transmissions are unsafe, concerns 2010–2014 Ford Fiesta and Focus models. Ford owners involved in the legal action claim the gearbox “slips, bucks, jerks, and harshly engages when driven” — a gripe echoed by other owners and the automotive press for years.

Sudden or delayed acceleration and difficulty in bringing the vehicle to a stop were other complaints listed in the suit, which alleges the transmission’s problems amounts to a violation of consumer law.

Poorly-shifting transmissions can give an automaker a reputation (looking at you, Smart Fortwo), something Ford tried to avoid with continuous upgrades to the PowerShift’s software. Still offered in the Focus and Fiesta, the transmission didn’t show up in North American Fiestas equipped with the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine. The similarly powered Focus is equipped with a traditional automatic as an option.

It’s also possible the transmission’s spastic nature is behind the relative popularity of manual-transmission Focus models.

A different version of PowerShift went into Volvo models beginning in 2008, but that unit avoided complaints of bad performance. The Volvo version uses hydraulic actuation, rather than the electric motor/solenoid actuation used in the Focus and Fiesta.

In Australia, Ford extended the warranties of tens of thousands of PowerShift-equipped vehicles last year after a barrage of consumer complaints. The owners in this lawsuit are going after a bigger win — they want a full refund of their vehicles’ purchase price, as well as compensation for repairs and stress.

Join the conversation
2 of 102 comments
  • Laserwizard Laserwizard on May 19, 2016

    Well, if you buy an automatic you get what you deserve. Gloating manual transmission gloater

  • BIllM704_MZ3SGT BIllM704_MZ3SGT on May 19, 2016

    I don't even see the 1.0 Ecoboost as an option for the Focus or the Fiesta anymore. Maybe they decided that it wasn't worth it? I could be wrong.

  • S J I’m here to say I don’t know about H #, but in German b flat is sometimes called “H”.Thats why composers (Liszt IIRC) could compose a theme and variations on B A C H.b flat sharp would be C, so there wouldn’t be a point.
  • Tassos The original, iconic 1964 Mustang sold for about $2,000.Is anybody still in doubt that the US Dollar has gone straight to hell?
  • Tassos I just read in Electrek that Lucid had to lay off 18% of its workforce, which amounts to a HUGE (considering the very meager production numbers) ONE THOUSAND THREE HUNDRED hard to replace employees laid off!!!
  • Kevin That wagon isn't worth 35,000 I paid 4,700 for a 68 chevelle and worth 80,000 today, when I bought it was 10x better shape than that but if someone wants it have at it but wouldn't be me.
  • MaintenanceCosts Assuming a level of refinement that's appropriately improved over the 9 years since the last car, these prices seem totally appropriate to me.