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Ford Freestyle CVT Transmissions



  • madsdadmadsdad Posts: 2
    2005 FS is dead in the shop in the dealership. Quoted 5400 to replace a piece of crap cvt tranny. I called the company and talked to a CSR who said after being on hold for 10 minutes that they are not aware of any cvt problems and there are no recalls or "customer satisfaction incdentives" at this time. Multiple posts here on edmonds with stevedebi experience with 2 of these, are they blind or just following the lead of big banks? Screwing the little guy seems popular. Who said "quality is job one". Done with Ford unless they man up, admit a mistake, and credit people their loses.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Posts: 877
    madsdad, Its a 5 year old vehicle. Are you saying Ford should have unlimited mileage/time warranties on their products? Did you buy an extended warranty when you bought it?

    Car companies could offer, say, 10-year, 120,000 mile complete warranties, but it would add about $2,000 to the cost of every new car. The Freestyle/500 CVT breaks down less often than conventional automatics. Sorry, but those are simply the facts overall.
  • sindersinder Posts: 37
    I'm right there with you, madsdad! Coldcranker will have you believe that the CVT is as realiable as any other transmission. I say "BULL".

    Cost me over 5K to replace my CVT at 67k miles, NOT with a new one....because they don't make these anymore (I know; you're shocked)... but with a remanned one. Which by the way, comes with 100k warranty.

    Why do people continue to defend the CVT in this particular vehicle"? The consumer should NOT have to pay over $5k in repairs to any vehicle that hasn't been crushed in an accident or something. :lemon:

    I too, contacted Ford and their CS bites.

    Again, I say to coldcranker that there is a right and wrong and people ought to know the difference. Hell, Toyota is fixing vehicles that MAY or MAY NOT have an issue, but not Ford. They know this is an issue and should "man up" and make it right. :mad:
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Posts: 877
    sinder, The facts say that the CVT is more reliable than other transmissions out there. It beat the transmissions in Muranos and Pilots, for example. A large survey was done, and overall the CVT is more reliable. Can they fail? Sure they can. Any transmission can fail. I bought an extended warranty when my car was new. Did you? Of course, by your logic, since I haven't had any trouble with mine, then that alone should "prove" its reliable. ;)
  • ande2960ande2960 Posts: 2
    The CVT in my 06 Freestyle needs replacing. Transmissions fail... It's part of life. The part that made me the most angry is the cost to replace it. The total bill for mine came to $6,000. $5,000 for parts, and the rest labor and tax. I sent a few complaints to Ford CS and then called and spoke with the dealer and service manager at the dealership where my car is. After some discussion, they agreed to take $2,000 off the cost of my repair. I am pleased with the decision because $4,000 is easier to handle than $6,000. The powertrain on the 06 Freestyle is 5/60. I am within the 5 years, but over the mileage. The remanned transmission comes with 5/70. This should get us through the life of the vehicle.
  • sindersinder Posts: 37
    The FACT is that you have a lot of people here making the very same complaint about the very same thing. Repairs to a vehicle that has been properly maintained should NOT BE 5-6 thousand dollars. That's a FACT !!! Are you getting the point yet ?

    Good Lord.....BY YOUR logic, anything I buy I should buy the extended warrantl because I would naturally, (as you must) be assuming that the maker of the whatever it is I am buying, likely isn't worth a crap.

    Can you tell me why I should have to buy an extended warranty on a vehicle, a stove, a power tool ? Doesn't ANY company stand behind their own product?. :confuse:

    And just what happens to ALL THAT $$$$ that people spend on extended warranties that never get used ? Yup !!! That's what I thought.

    5 - 6 THOUSAND DOLLARS coldcranker??. :mad: That's a lot of nickles for a repair on vehicles that are NOT all that old.

    Give me a break. You keep defending these things :sick: merely because you haven't had any problems. Well, that's nice. I'm glad you have not had any.

    With regards to the can make those turn out any way you chose. Paaaaaaa LEEEEEZ! A survery of all things. lmao !!!

    One more time for you folks that had to have your CVT replaced. It was or will be replaced with a REBUILT/REMANNED one because they DON'T MAKE THEM (new) :lemon: ANYMORE. Guess because they are soooooooooooooo realiable !!!!
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Posts: 877
    edited June 2010
    sinder, What statements do you disagree with?

    1. Cars break down occasionally.

    2. The Freestyle CVT transmission breaks down less often than other automatic transmissions.

    3. Consumer Reports knows how to do good surveys and does just that, not manipulating the results whatsoever. (They found the CVT to be above average in reliability.)

    4. Extended warranties are available for those people who don't want to take the risk past the normal 3 year warranty period.

    5. People who don't buy an extended warranty are assuming the risk of failure past the normal 3 year period in this case.

    6. If the Federal government mandated "forever"-length full warranties on products, the cost of those products would increase, although people would stop whining about older products failing (the bright side!).

    OK, here's another test: ... If car type "A" had a transmission that failed 5% of the time, and car type "B" 's failed 3% of the time, which would be the more reliable car? If you owned type "B" and your transmission failed, would you say that, all of a sudden, car type "B" was more unreliable? That's whats happening here. YOU CAN SAY YOU HAVE A TRANSMISSION FAILURE IN YOUR ONE CASE, BUT YOU CAN'T SAY THE FREESTYLE CVT IS LESS RELIABLE THAN THE AVERAGE OF ALL AUTOMATICS OUT THERE, BECAUSE THE FACTS ARE NOT ON YOUR SIDE.

    When you bring some facts, then you'll start making sense. I'm done. Now you can rant all you want about emotional crap.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    And just what happens to ALL THAT $$$$ that people spend on extended warranties that never get used ?

    Let me guess. The bulk of it goes to those people who spend money on extended warranties and DO use them! Some of it goes to profit. Do you think it would make sense to sell extended warranties if everyone broke even? The people who buy extended warranties believe it's worth the cost ... just in case. :)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    To throw in my 2cents, I had the 5 year extended warranty that I used for a power steering pump replacement, so I got some use out of it. Other than that, my '05 Freestyle SE FWD with 83,000 miles has been a good car. A couple of minor issues covered by warranty, as well as the brakes that were covered.

    I would say that while the CVT may statistically be reliable, if it does break it will cost more to fix. That's one of the reasons I treat mine gently.
  • madsdadmadsdad Posts: 2
    Forgot how much the dealership will charge for repair. Found one repair shop that will work on it and found a salvage tranny with 67k on it. Its a crap shoot, but I can buy 2 salvage units for 1 dealer unit. Will try to trade it ASAP when its fixed. Also, they are repairing the faulty throttle body that no one could find 6 months ago. I asked the dealership for a trade in quote even though there is no Ford in my future. They are not interested in buying a "project car". 3 repair shops refused to work on this transmission because it is a CVT. One of them said he went to school on it and it scared him because "just 1 drop of the wrong fluid will ruin it". To some degree I acknowledge that a 5 year old car breaking down should not be seen as unusual, but look at the cost of vehicles today. A vehicle under $20k is just plain disposable. A 3 year 36,000 warranty is crazy when you take out a 5 or 6 year loan. Dont know yet what we will buy, but 3/36k is crazy. My other vehicle is a Dodge Durango with a lifetime powertrain warranty. Maybe Dodge should say "quality is job one". Food for thought.
  • mrachedimrachedi Posts: 6
    This past week end we had wrench light came on. After restart light went off and we commenced to drive to different stops with no problems. Went to search engine and had two pages of hits on topic for manufacturer and model.

    Went to dealer first thing Monday. They did diagnosis since internal computer stores all errors even though car had restarts to clear symbol on dash. They found problems with the engine throttle. This must be a design problem since parts were all on back order. My dealer did find parts and after a 4 hour wait with 9926A Throttle Body Air Intake replace 9E926, two quick test diagnosis, and install 6F9Z 9E926 Throttle Control test and replace Throttle Body we had the problem fixed.

    We had about 73,198 miles on car and did have foresight to have extended warranty. Cost without warranty would have been close to $650 and only paid deduct of $50. Should be on a recall notice if parts are on back order indicating problem happens to many model owners.
  • joe288joe288 Posts: 1
    My 2005 Ford Freestyle transmission is failing at 54,000 miles. The dealer rebuilt it before the warranty went out, but that was obviously just a band-aid fix. Now that it is out of warranty, Ford says that the transmission needs to be totally replaced. They say it will cost us $6,000. They should have replaced the transmission while it was still under warranty. We had taken it in several times due to a strange noise. They used the electronic ears, but never pinpointed the problem until the rebuild.
  • I heard this the cvt breaks less often than regular transmissions, but regular transmissions can be fix anyware and parts are low cost but cvt's cannot be fix by anyone and the parts are really expensive. ford made this mess and stop making more and that drive cost higher since they don't make it anymore. I pray jesus that somehow something happens to ford like a recall were they have to pay more than what they ever made on this cars. I spend 1800 dollars fixing mine and it lasted 1 month now the shop says that they are tired of trying to fix mine since now they cannot fix the problem. What should i do now ford??

    i am in the hole with this car. i wish i know someone in the media like cnn and invide them while i set this car on fired and be shown on prime time while the commentator says a Ford customer tired of being screw by ford.

    would like to see their reaction in the pr dept.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    edited July 2010
    "I spend 1800 dollars fixing mine and it lasted 1 month now the shop says that they are tired of trying to fix mine since now they cannot fix the problem. "

    Wait a minute, are you saying that your Ford dealer told you it can't be fixed? That just doesn't seem right. If you used an independent mechanic, I'm almost surprised it lasted even a month. The CVT is advanced technology and needs specialized service.

    I hope your situation works out. Keep us informed!
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "My 2005 Ford Freestyle transmission is failing at 54,000 miles. The dealer rebuilt it before the warranty went out, but that was obviously just a band-aid fix. Now that it is out of warranty, Ford says that the transmission needs to be totally replaced. They say it will cost us $6,000. They should have replaced the transmission while it was still under warranty. We had taken it in several times due to a strange noise. They used the electronic ears, but never pinpointed the problem until the rebuild. "

    How long ago was the warranty fix? Normally such fixes carry a 12 month warranty on the parts / labor.
  • mycar26mycar26 Posts: 1

  • mrkristofermrkristofer Posts: 1
    edited October 2010
    I have a 2005 freestyle. Bought it used from a dealer last summer (2009) it had 13,000 miles. Now its a year later and it has 24,000 miles. The CVT is making a nasty sound like a bearing is worn out. Plus, when coasting down hills it does not let the car freely accelerate.

    Here is a video of the car, you can hear the sound. Its 2x as loud outside the car.

    Can anyone tell me what this is and what it will cost to fix? At 24,000 miles, worn out bearings mean either bad parts or too much torque or vibes (bad design).
  • bruneau1bruneau1 Posts: 468
    You may have a broken torque strut. It's in the engine compartment and is designed to keep the engine from moving too much. Just a guess- have it looked at.
  • bruneau1bruneau1 Posts: 468
    That sounds bad. A new transmission runs $6000-7000
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    " Plus, when coasting down hills it does not let the car freely accelerate. "

    This may be the design. I have had several cars that had "downhill speed limiters", that acted sort of like engine braking. It's been a couple of years since I owned my FS, so I can't remember if mine acted the same.
  • Add me to the list

    2006 Freestyle 88000 miles Repairs this year
    4 years old. Still paying the note

    New Trans $4300.00
    New Air Compressor $1000.00
    Throttle Body/Surging $1200.00

    Ford could care less. First and last ford product. Going back to Toyota, Honda or Hyundai. Can't wait to get rid of this piece of junk
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    edited October 2010
    Seems like a lot of those with Freestyle problems have only recently been members. Perhaps it's the same one individual looking to vent by creating more Edmunds userids and then posting "problems." Not necessarily true, but you never know.

    I've been posting for years, and while I don't have a Freestyle now, I owned one from 2005 until a few months ago and it was a great car. Other than routine maintenance, I didn't put in any of my own money for repairs (power steering pump under the extended warranty was the only repair). I sold the car with 86,000 miles one (I no longer needed such a large vehicle).

    If you look in Consumer's Reports, you'll find that the Freestyle has an average rating, which is much better than GM or Chrysler vehicles of a similar nature. I think anyone needing a vehicle that drives like a car, holds nearly as much as a minivan, and gets great MPG for a vehicle of its size should look at buying a used Freestyle. Due to depreciation, you can get one pretty cheap.

    Anyway, just don't let a few folks posting here ruin what really was a great car with high quality.
  • bruneau1bruneau1 Posts: 468
    We have a 2005 fwd Freestyle which we like very much. The throttle body was replaced under warranty before we had any bad driving situations. As for the CVT, it is my favorite thing about the vehicle. It is always doing the right thing, unlike the conventional transmissions in our other two cars. Granted, it's not as fast off the line. Sorry that many people are having problems. Hope our turn is not down the line.
  • sindersinder Posts: 37
    Surely you jest ? Someone actually creating mulitple ID's to complain about the Freeystyle CVT?
    You are most fortunate that you did not have any trouble with yours, but for those of that that have dropped 4-5-6K into a fairly young vehicle have to right to complain about it.

    Sorry, bobw3, but please do NOT suggest that anyone buy a used one....unless, of course the tranny has already been replaced with a remanned one.....('cause you can't buy a new one. :sick:
  • Most indie mechanics can handle Ford's "advanced" CVT. There are plenty of mechanics out there that can get through a tangled web of Benz, BMW, even Saab electrical issues and fix them for you at well below the cost a dealer will charge. I'm about to consider buying a Freestyle and with all the tranny problems on the CVT I may change my mind and not take the risk. Ford dropped the ball here based on all the awful experiences with this transmission; your blanket assumption about indie mechanics is misplaced.
  • sb, in what area of the country are you - curious if you work for a dealership that I'm getting a Freestyle checked out at soon.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992

    The vast majority of folks have ZERO problems with the Freestyle's transmission, so my experience is the norm. And the vast majority of folks buying a used Freestyle will also have no problems with their Freestyle transmission, so I don't see anything wrong with me recommending this vehicle. I recently sold mine to someone who bought it because their parents have and love the one they currently own.

    What happens is that when someone has a problem with their car, they search google and find other's with the same problem on Edmunds, and then they start posting their problems. too. It's pretty rare for someone with no problems to post here, just those with problems. That's why something can appear to be a "huge" problems when in reality it's a pretty isolated group having a problem. It's the same with any of these car forums.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    The vast majority of folks have ZERO problems with the Freestyle's transmission, so my experience is the norm.

    That may be but it does not in any way diminish the severity of the problem to those who experience it.

    Consider this. The overwhelming majority of swimmers never get attacked by sharks but would you be as dismissive of people who recommend against swimming at the beach where they were attacked? After all, the norm is that swimmers don't get attacked. Just a thought. :)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • sindersinder Posts: 37
    I did NOT go looking for a forum to post in. I merely went searching for what the problem could be with my vehicle, when I was damn near, in what would have been a brutal accident because of the tranny's malfunction.

    You keep talking about YOUR experience, but GUESS WHAT ???, my experience and many others are quite different from yours and we have the absolute right to say so.

    Unless you've been conducting some sort of study of Freestyle CVT from 05-08, then how can you speak of the vast majority ? And if it is so "RARE" for someone with no problems to post here.......why are you ?

    I assure you that if you had to dump an extra 5-6K into a vehicle with less than 65K, you too might find that a little painful. And for the record, I would NEVER recommend the 05-08 Freestyle to anyone and I would sooner set it ablaze then to hand it down to a family member. :lemon:
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    edited October 2010
    I leased a FS SEL in early 2006. I had no trouble with the CVT or anything else. I went to a hybrid at the end of the lease, but I considered purchasing my FS. However the lease had set the residual too high for the resale value, so it wasn't worth it. It is still the most comfortable vehicle I've ever owned, and had the most utility.

    I don't devalue those who have had a bad experience, but these forums do tend to draw people together who have had issues, and the internet search engines point here.

    Personally I think there were some bad CVT units manufactured, rather that it being a design flaw.
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