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Appeals Court: Ford Knew Power Stroke V8 Was Defective

A ruling by a California lower court has been upheld by the Court of Appeals. It maintains that Ford conducted fraudulent behavior in an effort to sell 2006 F-350s with a defective 6.0-liter Power Stroke diesel V8. Though there have been other cases surrounding the 6.0-liter Power Stroke diesel engine this is the first case that has made it through the appeals process. So what the appeals court is saying is that Ford knew the Power Stroke V8 was defective and sold it anyway.

The 6.0-liter Power Stroke diesel engine was available in 2003-2007 Super Duty trucks and 2003-2010 Ford E-Series full-size vans. Previous lawsuits have alleged the diesel engine had faulty head gaskets, turbochargers, and oil coolers. A previous class-action lawsuit around this diesel engine was settled by Ford in 2013. But new evidence is damning for Ford.

There is evidence Ford knew that there were problems with the Power Stroke diesel engine

A Ford F-350 heavy-duty truck at a gas station.
A man filling up his heavy-duty truck with gas | Getty

What sets this case apart from others is evidence Ford knew that there were problems with the 6.0-liter diesel engine. Emails discovered by the plaintiff detail Ford management grappling with massive warranty repair costs going back to 2006. John Koszewnik, who was the director of Ford’s North American diesel division revealed in emails that 6.0-liter diesel warranty repairs were costing Ford “as high as $5 million a month.”

The lawsuit has been brought by Charles Brian Margeson according to Ford Authority. As of now, Ford has already said it would pay Margeson almost $215,000. It will also pay for Mr. Margeson’s legal fees. The punitive damages portion of the lawsuit has not been determined. 

These Power Stroke diesel engines were first available starting in 1994. Power Stroke engines were available for heavy-duty truck applications. They were originally re-branded Navistar International VT diesel until Ford made their own design available in 2010. The new engine could better compete with both GM’s 6.6-liter Duramax V8 and Ram’s Cummins inline-six diesel. 

Navistar produced the Power Stroke diesel for Ford from 2003 until 2016

press photo against a white backdrop gold Ford F-250 diesel pickup truck
2000 Ford F-250 | Kelley Blue Book

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Navistar produced the VT diesel from 2003 until 2016. It became known as the MaxxForce diesel brand. Competing directly against the Cummins B-series and Mercedes-Benz MBE900 diesel engines. After 2016 Navistar used the Cummins ISB 6.7-liter diesel engine. 

The VT was known for its Series Sequential Turbocharger system. Rather than being a twin-turbo arrangement, there is a high-pressure and a low-pressure turbocharger. The high-pressure turbo was called the VGT for variable geometry turbo. It used a high-pressure common rail fuel injection fuel system. 

With 350 hp it produced 650 lb-ft of torque at 3000 rpm when installed in a Navistar product. It rated the same horsepower and torque but at 2000 rpm in Ford products. The difference was because Navistar didn’t utilize the compound turbocharger system. Instead, it used a variable vane turbocharger. But in 2010 it went with dual-compound turbos.