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Future Ford of Sacramento, Lift Kits, Lemon Law

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Case Description

Buyer went to Future Ford of Sacramento to purchase a 2001 Ford F150. While testing the Ford F150, Buyer discovered that the window was making noise and didn’t work properly. The salesperson assured Buyer that the issue would be fixed if Buyer purchased the vehicle. Believing the issue was minor and would be repaired, Buyer signed purchase documents for the Ford F150 and, at the insistence of the salesperson, agreed to purchase a “bumper-to-bumper” warranty.

Following the purchase, Buyer continued to have issues with the Ford F150’s window making noise, and also discovered that a different window leaked water on the back seat when it rained. When he returned to Future Ford for repairs, Buyer was informed that the warranty Dealer sold him did not cover the window motor or the F150’s window seals. When the buyer confronted the salesman, Future Ford agreed to take back the 2001 Ford F150, and sell them a 2007 Ford F150 instead.

After the buyer agreed, he was sent to the “warranty department” where he explained that he wasn’t interested in buying another warranty since the last one didn’t cover any of the other Ford’s issues, but the representative insisted and guaranteed that the warranty covered a vast majority of the Ford F150 components, adding, “It’s a machine; anything can happen.” When the representative said the warranty would cost about $140 per month, the buyer replied that the payment was too high. The representative continued to discount the warranty, and eventually stated that he would give the buyer his “employee discount” to reduce the payments to $30 per month, assuring Buyer that the warranty would still cover the same components. When the buyer asked why it took so long to reduce the price, and the representative vaguely responded, “You will be happy with this warranty. It’s a certified bumper-to-bumper.”

Unbeknownst to Buyer, Future Ford of Sacramento could not have actually certified the Ford F150 due to a lift kit and tires that voided Ford’s warranty. Future Ford also did not disclose, as required by law, that the vehicle had previously been repossessed from a prior owner. Additionally, during the negotiation, Future Ford secretly engaged in the unlawful act of payment packing – Buyer did not agree and was not aware that they purchased additional items coupled with the vehicle and warranty, including Express Etch, a theft protection service. Nevertheless, the buyer relied on the statements made by Future Ford and agreed to purchase a warranty for the 2007 Ford F150.

Less than a year later, the Ford F150 buyer began experiencing power steering issues and again returned to Future Ford for repairs. After dropping off the vehicle, a service advisor called Buyer and informed him that the power steering was not covered by the warranty because the vehicle was preowned. The buyer explained that he had been paying monthly for a certified bumper-to-bumper warranty and asked to speak to a supervisor. Once he looked into the matter, the supervisor approved the repairs on the 2007 F150.

Within seven months, the buyer discovered yet another defect: the F150 would not engage into gear and generated a loud noise before stalling. The vehicle’s check engine light activated soon after. When Buyer called Future Ford to discuss the issue, the service advisor told him that the repair was not covered by the warranty. The buyer again asked to speak with the supervisor, who stated, “This warranty should have never been sold with the truck because it was a modified vehicle.” Buyer continued to argue that he was pressed to purchase this warranty by Future Ford and was paying monthly to ensure that repairs of this nature would be covered. Buyer further explained that he would call the news media and publicize the issue if the defect was not fixed. Only then did the supervisor approve the repairs on the Ford F150.

Future Ford held the 2007 F150 for ten days without providing the buyer a loaner car. When Buyer finally picked up the vehicle, he discovered that a component of the Ford F150’s power steering was modified – namely, the front bushing boots appeared thinner. The service technician claimed that the replacement components were standard factory parts, but Buyer knew that the F150 had heavier bushing boots. Regardless, Buyer and his family were left without a vehicle for too long so he kept the Ford F150 while reserving his doubts.

Not too long after, the Ford F150 ABS light turned on and the racket pinion of the power steering failed. When Buyer brought the vehicle into Future Ford, the supervisor again refused to repair the F150 and even wrote Buyer a check to refund the warranty. Buyer rejected the refund, insisting that he had been paying monthly for the bumper-to-bumper warranty and expected it to cover him through these situations. Once the buyer explained that he was questioning the reliability of Ford Motor Company and warned that Future Ford was violating a contract, the supervisor feared legal action and agreed to make the repairs.

About a year later, while Buyer was driving in the carpool lane with his three-year-old son and his friend, the steering wheel of the F150 made a 180 degree turn but the vehicle continued to drive straight. Suddenly, the driver’s side tire flew off and the front bumper began to scrape the ground, igniting sparks. The surrounding traffic immediately took evasive action as the Ford F150 headed toward the center divider. As the buyer began to pull the steering wheel toward the right to avoid colliding with the center divider, he found that the brakes were not operating. Fearing for lives of his child, himself, and his friend, Buyer kept pushing hard on the brake pedal until it reached the floor. Luckily, he was able to pull the F150 to the emergency lane and call Roadside Assistance.

Shortly thereafter, Buyer went back to Future Ford to meet with the service technician who performed the most recent repairs. When presented with the 2007 F150, the technician kept insisting that Buyer “hit something” and refused to repair the vehicle. Buyer kept explaining that the vehicle did not hit anything, but the technician still refused, only adding, “At least you’re still alive.” Realizing that Future Ford did not care at all for the safety and well-being of their customers, Buyer and his family contacted the Law Offices of Robert Mobasseri to take legal action.

With the help of our experienced and aggressive attorneys specializing in Dealer Fraud and Lemon Law, Buyer took Future Ford of Sacramento and Ford Motor Company to trial for breaching their contract under the Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, engaging in payment packing, and improper product disclosure. The jury returned a verdict in favor of Buyer and the court ordered Future Ford to pay Buyer monetary compensation for damages, a statutory penalty for willful conduct, and Buyer’s attorney fees and costs. In total, the judgement in Buyer’s favor was over $410,000.