Ford Becomes Latest Car Brand Dragged into Diesel Emissions Scandal
Another one bites the diesel dust. A class action lawsuit filed by truck owners claims that the American car brand installed software that allowed two F-Series pickups–particularly the F-250 and F-350 Super Duty models–to deceitfully pass federal emissions tests.
Ford’s name gets added to the growing list of car makers accused of cheating on diesel vehicle emissions, which started in 2015 with Volkswagen AG and now includes Mercedes, Audi, FCA, BMW, and others. If confirmed, Ford could end up paying millions, if not billions, of dollars in settlements and fines, much like its counterparts who admitted to their malpractices.
Ford, however, has denied the allegations, and said in a statement that all of its vehicles comply with both federal and state emissions regulations.
“All Ford vehicles, including those with diesel engines, comply with all U.S. EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and CARB (California Air Resources Board) emissions regulations,” Daniel Barbosa, a spokesman for Ford, said in an emailed statement. “Ford vehicles do not have defeat devices. We will defend ourselves against these baseless claims.”
According to the complaint, Ford manipulated the emissions system in the F-250 and F-350 in violation of federal requirements, similar to what Volkswagen did with its recalled vehicles. The F-Series trucks release over 50 times the legal limit for nitrogen oxide pollutants, the complainants asserted.
In its marketing copies, Ford called the trucks “the cleanest super diesel ever.” The lawyer behind the lawsuit countered that the vehicles should have been called “Super Dirty” instead.
“The vehicle’s own on-board diagnostic software indicates emission control system to be operating as Ford intended, even though its real world performance grossly exceeds the standard,” attorney Steve Berman, a managing partner at Hagens Berman, said in the complaint.
The lawsuit also alleged that Ford partnered with Bosch to cover up the vehicle’s inefficiencies. As such, Bosch is also a defendant in the proposed class action.
“Bosch takes the allegations of manipulation of the diesel software very seriously,” Bosch spokesman Rene Ziegler said in an emailed statement. “Bosch is cooperating with the continuing investigations in various jurisdictions, and is defending its interests in the litigation. As a matter of policy, and due to the sensitive legal nature of these matters, Bosch will not comment further concerning matters under investigation and in litigation.”