“I was stopped at a parking lot exit waiting to enter a thoroughfare, engine idling, with my foot lightly on the brake,” said a Saginaw driver of a 2012 Ford Focus with a 6-Speed Dual-Clutch Semi-Automatic (DPS6) transmission.
“Suddenly, the car accelerated forward, into the traffic lane, as though someone had pressed the accelerator pedal to the floor. I took a 45 mph T-bone on my driver’s side door.”
In reporting this incident to the federal safety authorities, the driver said that though he was saved by the airbag, his elderly wife “suffered a severe heart bruising from the seat belt.”
Other drivers of 2011-2016 Ford Fiesta and 2012-2016 Ford Focus vehicles equipped with DPS6 transmissions reported similar experiences to Detroit Free Press.
Carrie Armstrong, 42, of Hendersonville, Tennessee, said she bought a new 2015 Focus and experienced transmission issues after just two months.
“What’s it going to take?” Armstrong told Detroit Free Press. “Does someone have to die before they get these cars fixed? When I am on the interstate and almost get hit by a diesel truck just because my car will not accelerate and get into gear? I put my life in danger every day I get behind the wheel of this car just to go to work.”
These experiences are by no means isolated. In an internal 2016 DPS6 update, with each page marked “SECRET,” 350,000 cars are noted to “have already reached 3+ repairs in US.”