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Plaintiffs claim Ford's PowerShift transmission experiences shuddering, slipping, bucking, jerking, hesitation, premature wear and sudden or delayed acceleration.

Ford has been hit with a lawsuit over an alleged transmission defect in the Focus and Fiesta.

The litigation focuses on the dual-clutch PowerShift transmission used in certain 2012-2016 Focus and 2011-2016 Fiesta sedans, representing around 7,000 vehicles, according to Automotive News.

Plaintiffs claim the gearbox is prone to "shuddering, slipping, bucking, jerking, hesitation while changing gears, premature internal wear, delays in downshifting and, in some cases, sudden or delayed acceleration."

Attorneys from Stern Law PLLC argue that Ford has "actively concealed" the alleged defect and told customers the behavior is normal.

"Ford issued multiple Technical Service Bulletins to its dealers but never directly notified consumers of known problems with the PowerShift Transmission," the lawsuit adds. "Ford further perpetuated its cover-up by ultimately issuing two 'Customer Satisfaction Programs' that simply offered additional ineffectual repairs without disclosing the truth about the Transmission Defect."

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration lists dozens of powertrain TSBs for the 'DPS6' automatic transmission. Repairs and extended warranties relate to transmission control modules and programming, wiring harnesses and fluid leaks, among other issues.

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One TSB blames "loss of transmission engagement" on possible circuit failures within the TCM. Another cites "clutch shudder during light acceleration" as a consequence of "fluid contamination" caused by leaking input shaft seals.

"Ford must be held accountable for design and manufacturing defects of the PowerShift transmission that has compromised the safety of the vehicles and cost owners significant loss in vehicle value, reliable transportation and time," says Stern Law founder and principal Ken Stern.

Ford has declined to comment specifically on the ongoing litigation but said it is "committed to providing our customers with top-quality vehicles."