As detailed in an earlier April 2022 order from the court, the plaintiffs are buyers and lessees of 2013-2018 F-150 trucks from various states who alleged Ford Motor Company sold them trucks with a defective brake system, which resulted in brake system failure. The plaintiffs maintain Ford knew about the defect through avenues such as a prior Subaru recall for some vehicle models that used similar Hitachi-made master cylinders, Ford’s pre-sale testing, and Ford’s monitoring of vehicle warranty claims, replacement parts data, and customer complaints. The lawsuit raised claims of common law fraud and violation of consumer protection laws. And, although Ford recalled some vehicles, the plaintiffs assert the recall did not cover all vehicles affected.
The court certified a class of all persons who purchased or leased a 2013-2018 Ford F-150 equipped with a Hitachi made step-bore master cylinder not included in Safety Recall 20S31 in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, and Texas for a determination of: whether the vehicles’ brake systems were defective; whether Ford had pre-sale knowledge of the defect; and whether information about the defect that was concealed would be material to a reasonable buyer.
In its subsequent May 2022 order, the court amended that definition to clarify that the three issues extend to five separate state issue classes. The court also addressed procedures for class notice, including questions of electronic and social media notice to possible class members. The court ordered that by August 17, 2022, copies of the notice must be sent to class members by first-class mail, as well as by electronic means to those class member for whom email addresses are available. Requests to opt out from the state issue classes must be delivered to the claim administrator no later than October 17, 2022.
The case is Paul Weidman, et al. v. Ford Motor Company, case number 2:18-cv-12719, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.
You can read the court's May 2022 order below: