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Ford Freestyle Transmission Failure



  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    I'd say the same thing. If you really like the FS, just get another one because the problems you're describing are not common.
  • dnashdnash Posts: 35
    I would agree. But I don't think I would shout it.
  • freealfasfreealfas Posts: 652
    wasn't shouting, didn't realize i was typing all caps till i was done...
  • hfm123hfm123 Posts: 2
    I had a bad wheel bearing that gave me similar symptoms.

  • dnashdnash Posts: 35
    I was just kidding. I have read a lot of your other stuff that probably would have fit more with shouting than that.
  • vicenacvicenac Posts: 229
    Thank you for all the replies...
    I'm sure I would not get one as bad as this one, But...
    The main problem was the dealers. Like in many other stories here, they limit their investigations to reading the codes. I tell them "the engine's idle speed fluctuates in 100F+ heat". It's 80F outside; they still connect the computer and tell me there is nothing wrong.
    I'm sure there is a pressure sensor in the intake manifold that could be malfunctioning, there is an electronic throttle that could be flaky in extreme heat. They should test for these things...
    Did I tell you that for my first three visits I had to show the tech how to read the odometer?
    I took once a Honda Accord to a Honda dealer. A tech came out and told me a bunch of staff about my car that I did not know. Then proceeded with a quick investigation and told me what was going on about my problem.
    I'm afraid to buy another Ford because of their dealerships. Hmmmm maybe I'll lease one, and if it works fine I'll buy it, how about that?
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    Ever try servicing it an a Lincoln-Mercury or even a Mazda dealership?

    But it's true that if you can get good service after the purchase, then that will have a big impact on making a purchase.
  • freealfasfreealfas Posts: 652
    i just tried a L/M dealer for service that's close to our house for our FS and came away impressed. as soon as warranty and 4 remaining free oil changes are done with the Ford dealer we bought from are through we'll be switching full time with no regret as the original dealer hasn't been anything special.
  • bohemia1bohemia1 Posts: 33
    2005 FWD FreeStyle SE 27,500 miles (12,500 on replaced transmission)
    8/30 drove daughter to grad school in New York City. Supposed to be a 3 hour drive but really took 5 hours with stops to eat, and 90 minutes to cross Geo Wash Bridge - 162 miles total one way. FS was totally packed with just enough room for a driver and two passengers.
    FS ran great. Did not miss a beat at 70+ miles per hour for long stretches. Then totally bumper to bumper crawling city traffic. FS had no issues at all. As you can tell, I am totally happy with the vehicle on this trip.
    I cannot really comment on Ford service as my wife usually takes it in for routine service. I did get involved with the transmission failure and found our dealer's service department to be knowlegeable and sensitive to our needs. :)
  • Attention to service is a function of the dealership.
    Whereas some manufacturers (like Ford) offer financial incentives and extra recognition to dealers with outstanding feedback from customers many dealers do not attempt to qualify.
    Look for a dealer with with a high ranking to get your vehicle serviced at, it doesn't matter whether you purchased the vehicle from them.
    You mention great experience with Volkswagen - I can tell you that I went through three dealers in Northern NJ and all were incompetent and overpriced - couldn't wait to get rid of the VW and will not buy another.
  • "You mention great experience with Volkswagen - I can tell you that I went through three dealers in Northern NJ and all were incompetent and overpriced - couldn't wait to get rid of the VW and will not buy another."

    Ditto for me. As my name would suggest, I once owned a 2002 Passat that was a maintenance nightmare from day one. The VW dealership involved in this mess treated me like I should have felt privileged to do business with them. The happiest day in my life was when I traded that POS in for my '05 Freestyle. My experience with both the Freestyle and my Ford dealership have been night & day different. Lesson learned.
  • We actually purchased a brand spankin new 2005 Freestyle in April 2005 - had it 3 days and drove 80 miles and BAM - transmission gone. 1 week in the shop and transmission sent back to detroit - "we've never seen anything like this before"
  • Maybe they keep their eyes closed in Detroit!

    We are now above 30,000 miles (15k on the new transmission).

    I had to replace the brakes recently though. Not happy with that since my '01 Civic's brakes were still original at 84k when I traded it.

    I really like the FS design, it is just a shame Ford messed up the execution.
  • I have the same problem with my 2005 Freestyle for the last month as you. It is currently in the shop for the second time with the same symptoms as yours. The dealership says they cannot find a problem. Did you get your transmission replaced?
  • xfordmanxfordman Posts: 1
    Has anyone else seen this problem? Gear welded to input shaft of the transmission sheared from the shaft. The weld has broken due to lack of weld penetration and bead width. It was within warrantee. This occurred when in cruise control at highway speed going up hill. Load was lost on the engine the following idiot lights flashed (wrench and traction control). It has been in shop for two weeks and counting. Ford will not replace transmission. They are replacing the sheared part only.
  • janetzjanetz Posts: 4
    Had the same problem on Christmas Eve. Not going up hill, but cruise control on, took 3 weeks to get repaired, actually had to have engineers come out and show where the input shaft came unwelded. got the car back and it leaked transmission fluid, took back again, then a month later the throttle body sensor went. Now it seems that my windshield has come un glued. I noticed when I picked it up the first time for the transmission that there were spots on the inside of the window. The spots keep coming back, along with streaks. Had my husband look at it, can move the windshield a bit. I am wondering if Ford had a bad batch of these vehicles go out. Since my transmission was repaired, my gas mileage has gone down considerably. Used to get 24.5 mpg, now get 21.6. Also car does not seem to run right. Hopefully you won't have any future problems with yours. :sick:
  • ct2ctct2ct Posts: 5
    I have a 2006 FS. Right after the warranty ran out, about 38,000 miles, the check engine light came on. I was hearing weird noises from the engine, it started roughly, ran roughly, especially in the cold weather. Then it started having acceleration issues. It has now been in the dealer twice for a total of 4 weeks. They still don't really know what is wrong. They have changed the engine prob light sensor twice, and supposedly run it through a lot of testing. The check engine light keeps coming back on. They have alternately told me various issues were wrong with it, only to tell me later that that wasn't the issue after all. They have also checked the coils, checked the PCM and are now saying that they need to replace something to do with timing chains and that it will cost $1600. If that doesn't work, they tell me the whole engine will need replacing, at a cost of $6800! I about dropped the phone. They have alternated between telling me it is a computer problem to my problem with not changing the oil soon enough. This car is not that old and doesn't have that many miles on it. Any one with this issue? I saw some transmission issues on this site and they sound similar to mine. Any suggestions before I spend a load of money and hope it gets fixed correctly? Thanks in advance. :sick:
  • janetzjanetz Posts: 4
    Sorry about your problems. I just got mine back again this Tuesday. So far, I have had the throttle body replaced, the input shaft sheared- which should not be your problem if you can still drive it, brakes replaced, ignition tumbler replaced and gas pedal assesmbly replaced. This last time, I took it in due to running rough and having a vibration in the gas pedal. They actually re-aligned my engine and exhaust system(something it should have not needed) also re-programmed my powertain (again, not heard of something that should have to be done by actual Ford Engineers). The E :sick: ngineers I spoke with stated that the adjustments are basically unheard of, and that if they were actually what caused my problems. then I will probably have them in the future. The transmission problems on this car seem to be hit or miss. Some people have had no problems, but those of us that do seem to have continous problems. Sorry that I don't have any answers, but maybe some of my listed repairs might help them in diagnosing yours.
  • stmssstmss Posts: 206
    I think you need to get a second opinion from another dealer. And a third if necessary. The fact that the story keeps changing tells me they don't know and are willing to do some trial and error repairs on your dime.

    I had my check engine light on and acceleration problems and it turned out to be the electromechanical dohickey on the transmission. It was not running roughly or hard starting though. I would think running rough, hard starting would not be transmission related. I would tend to think that it is electrical/computer related? But - just a guess obviously.

    I have 100,000 km on my 06 with zero engine problems.
  • They changed the name. Ford "NOT"FREE-STYLE is now a Taurus X. Why? Cause the other one did not work. We bought ours back in 2005 Brand New. In late 05 early 2006 it was shifting funny. No Worries it was under warranty. Now in March 2008. The wrench light came on. We were at 55k miles out of warranty and a Mecatronic and Shifter Bazzler cost us $2000.00. Now in June 2008, The little light came on. Now we need a full transmission. $8000.00. They found metal shavings in the pan with the fluid. My little Mecatronic piece which is brand new will go out the window with the bathwater ($2000) when they drop a new transmission in.They said this vehicle has a unique CVT transmission. So unique that it does not work. Remember the great deal I thought I had in 2005 for a 7 Seater (family of 6)...done. How can they open my sealed transmission in March put a new part in it and seal it and put fluid in so that pieces won't it has metal shavings. HOW? I remember the dealer I bought this from say to me that they do not make their money on the sale of a car but on the service. I want to buy American, but maybe it has to be a GM (made in Canada). I do not know...I am really blown away by this mess. I guess if our Economic Ressesion ever comes I am done. Oh wait we are almost in a ressesion. Lights Out In San Diego County.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    I have 62,000 on my '05 FS and no CVT problems, but the CVT was one of the reasons I bought a 100,000 mile extended warranty with zero deductable for $1000...hopefully I'll never need it.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "We were at 55k miles out of warranty and a Mecatronic and Shifter Bazzler cost us $2000.00."

    Are those the actual names?

    Did the dealer provide any warranty when they did the $2000 repair? These kind of things generally have some warranty period. If the replaced parts contributed to the failure, you may have some justification to ask Ford for some compensation.
  • Bought a 2006 Freestle SEL new from local dealership. No major issues except brake recall. We hit 25,000 miles and one day we started the car and the wrench, engine light, and traction control (car swerving light) all came on and the car road really rough. Got home, shut it off and the next time it was fine. Two days later it did the same thing except it started jumping forward when I accelerated and stopped. Took it straight to the dealership and it was a "wire". They couldn't explain why the car did didn't run fine. So out the door we went. 8 days later, it started again except worse. The car wouldn't accelerate and when I was up to 40 or 50 mph it would suck back like I downshifted and drop me to 20 mph which was great for the cars behind me. I took it straight to the dealership and the man looked at it and said, "Yep, it's the transmission". After a week, they still had no idea what it was and told me they were contacting their "master mechanic" and he would come out 24-48 hours after the call was placed. The NEXT morning they called me to pick up the car....and they replaced the throttle body. My Husband picked it up and drove it about 50 miles and put it in the garage for the night. The next morning I went to start it and the car lurched forward in park!! Then the rpms were almost to the red zone while it was idling. Turned it back off and restarted it....fine. Came home let it sit in the garage for about 2 hours and when I started it, it did the same thing. As I was driving BACK to the dealership, my blinker was going crazy and my power door locks kept locking and unlocking. When I arrive the "nice" man told me he has NEVER heard of a car lurching/jumping forward in park...apparently it mechanically can't happen. He told me that if it doesn't do it to him, there is nothing else we can do. :lemon:

    So that is where we are at....I'm aware of the Lemon law but it's 2 days short of being in for 15 days and we were told the car had to be in three times for the same problem. It was the same problem on our end but ford turned it into a different problem everytime--I don't think they even mentioned the word transmission.

    We did pay extra for the extended warranty and even went into the dealership to have them buyback the car and put us into another ford or my same car without the CVT and after they ran the numbers, we would have been screwed.

    I know this is long, BUT I called another Ford dealership to see if they would offer me more than our local dealership for a buy back and after I gave him the info and VIN he told me my car is a liability and he could only auction it off, not resell it on his lot.

    So my question is, do I have any other recourse? For us, this is a safety issue. I drive my children around (all under 9) and I cringe everytime I get into the car. The dealership claims the've "never heard of these problems".

    I owe $20,000 on the car (bought it new for $32,000). I'm not asking for everything back....I did drive the car for two years before this started. However, I need to get out of this car for our safety but can't do so with the $20g hanging over our head.

    Any ideas??

    Thanks!! :confuse:
  • I ended up contacting a Lemon Law Lawyer. Their web address is:

    They only assist in some states so you will have to see if your state is listed, if not, you might still want to call and see if they can refer you to someone else, the consultation is free. They were great, they explained the whole process, and everything went as they told me it would. They were able to get me a cash settlement pretty fast. Also, contact Ford and complain, they will probably assign an engineer to look over your car, you can use that diagnosis as the 4th visit and another day the car was out of commission. They do not have to say the word transmission, you just have to provide all the repair statements to the lemon law lawyers and they make the determination if it belongs under "transmission"

    Hope this helps, let me know if it does. By the way, took the cash settlement, paid down the loan and got rid of the car. I took a hit on the trade in, but at least now I feel safe driving again.
  • We bought a 2005 Freestyle in Feb.08 still having about 10,000 miles left on the warranty. And now it's out of warranty by 5 mos. We only have 34,000 miles on it, and the mechtronic computer is failing. After reading all of the stories, I talked to a lemon law lawyer and he said that we don;t have a case because, we never had any problems while it was under warranty. He did say, that we should try looking fo any class action lawsuits. I looked, but didn't find any. Is there anybody interested in starting a class action lawsuit?
  • What are you talking about? I read these boards all the time and haven't seen a common thread of engine and/or transmission management computers failing on the Freestyle. I also have an '05, now with 68,000 miles on it and it has been the most reliable car I've ever owned. Go Ford! Keep up the good work!

    Any car can have a failure, and if it out of warranty then the onus is on you. It seems you are highly sensitive to such events, so perhaps next time you buy a car you should buy an extended warranty. The thought of suing any automaker for an out of warranty failure seems ridiculous to me. You bought the car and knew how long the warranty lasted, so why is this Ford's problem?
  • nomorefords,
    I gotta agree with saabturboid on this one. If the Freestyle had a high rate of failures over the entire population of vehicles, then there might be a class action lawsuit, similar to the one Toyota recently faced with their poor engineering of their V6 engines (sludge issue). However, we know Consumer Reports surveyed hundreds of random owners and found the Freestyle is actually MORE reliable than the average '05 vehicle out there. In my one case, my '05 Freestyle at 48,000 miles has had no major trouble, and gets great MPG, etc. I do sympathize with your problem, but understand that owning cars is risky in many ways. I know Honda owners that wish we would start WWII up again they are so mad at their Japanese makers! (Head cracking problems and electrical issues.) Its not rational, but there is the emotion. I am paranoid and got an extended warranty at some cost to my wallet. Also, I might add, I have an '05 F150 with no problems either. Fords are great cars. The Fusion has won JD Powers quality awards, for example.
  • ruthorutho Posts: 1
    I bought my Freestyle new in Dec 2006. After having it a couple months while on a trip to San Diego when I went to pull out into traffic I lost all power, the engine didn't die but it would go down to an idle, I costed to the side put the car in park and then pulled back out into traffic no problem, this happened 2 times in that weekend. During the next week it happened again. I took the car to the Ford dealership and they replaced the throttle body. After putting 18,000 on the mile I took the car to the dealership because the brakes were failing, they didn't want to acknowledge there was a problem, they told my husband maybe I'd driven with the park brake on. My husband left the car there and said he wouldn't be back to pick it up until they agreed to replace the brakes, a few hours later they called and had replaced the brakes. They told my husband they hadn't seen this happen with other freestyles. Since then I have to replace the brakes every 30 to 40,000 miles. I've taken the car into the local Ford dealership 3 times because of a noise the car makes after I've been driving a while, I call it a whinning sound. I drive a lot of miles most days and after I've been driving a while the noise starts. Everytime I take the car in they tell me they can't find anything, theres no engine lights on and they've take it for a test drive and they hear nothing. I took it back about 3 weeks ago because I was just under 100,000 (my warranty expires) because the noise was still there and they told me the same thing. The technician had me go for a ride with him and we heard nothing. I told him he'd have to drive with me for 50 miles or so before it would start, he said he couldn't do that. Now I'm at 101,100 miles and today I drove 200 miles and the noise was VERY loud by the time I finished at the end of the day. I've had them check the transmission, they tell me it's a all in one unit and they aren't able to check the fluid. My husband had them check power steering, they say that's not it. After this last visit they sent the paper work to my home and it says they checked the transmission fluid but the technician told me himself he didn't know how to check the fluid because it appeared to be an all in one unit. I'm very stressed that now that I've hit my warranty I'm gonna have to replace the transmission. Any suggestions?
  • bruneau1bruneau1 Posts: 468
    The transmission fluid can be checked by a technician, but not by the consumer since there is no dip stick. Also, the car's computer will register transmission problems indicated either by the dreaded wrench light on the dash or by checking status of various components using the program on the steering wheel. You need to contact Ford Customer Service before warranty runs out. And the technician at your dealership sounds like an idiot, but there are lots of them our there, and we are at their mercy. Any other dealers around there.? Bonne chance.
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