Ford Australia has been fined $7.6 million (AU$10 million) for mishandling complaints in thousands of cars accused of having faulty gearboxes.
The fines levied to Ford’s Australian subsidiary have to do with complaints relating to faulty automatic transmissions in about 10,500 Ford Focus, Fiesta, and EcoSport models made from 2011 to 2015, according to the Associated Press. These models were made in the United State India, Germany, and Thailand, and were fitted with DPS6 PowerShift dual-clutch automatic transmission.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) first proceeded against Ford Australia in July of 2017 in relation to Ford's response to customer complaint and stated that the automaker had inadequate processes which caused many customers to purchase new replacement vehicles at a significant additional cost to the customers, according to the ACCC.
The ACCC took action against the automaker for mishandling customer complaints over cars that shuddered, jerked or lost power because of faulty transmissions, according to The Guardian.
Ford agreed to establish an independent complaints review program for customers who were refused a refund or no-cost replacement car, according to the Associated Press. Review hearings will begin in July.