Ford is Being Sued by Shelby GT350 Mustang Owners

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There is a group of Ford Shelby GT350 Mustang owners that aren’t too happy.

A lawsuit has been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, seeking monetary damages for a proposed nationwide class of consumers who purchased or leased Shelby GT350 Mustangs. The lawsuit alleges Ford knowingly sold defective Shelby GT350 sports cars, saying that while they were marketed as “track-ready,” the Shelby GT350 cannot actually be operated safely on a race track.

Owners are saying that once on the track, the Shelby GT350 Mustang can lose speed and power mid-drive, without warning and in as little as 15 minutes. They are being represented by Hagens Berman, which achieved the then-largest automotive settlement in U.S. history – $1.6 billion against Toyota for a concealed defect. Hagens Berman is also leading the litigation against General Motors for its ignition switch defects, as well as various national lawsuits against Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz for illegal use of emissions-cheating software.

SEE ALSO: 2016 Ford Shelby Mustang GT350 Review

The lawsuit alleges Shelby GT350 Mustangs with the base model or Technology Package can overheat due to defective transmissions and rear differentials that cannot keep cool enough to function at high speeds without external transmission and differential coolers. When this happens, the vehicles reportedly go into Limp Mode, suddenly losing power and rapidly decelerating.

“When Ford marketed and sold these Shelby GT350 Mustangs, it knew exactly how to appeal to track-enthusiasts: it marketed enhanced performance in a limited-edition iconic vehicle that has been associated with racing for generations,” said Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman. “We believe that Ford induced purchasers with its ‘track-ready’ marketing, when in fact it knew that this defect would ultimately bar these Mustangs from ever being the hotrod consumers paid for.”

Discuss this story on our Ford Mustang Forum

  • Bug S Bunny

    Please, even a third-grader should know the difference between “track ready” and “race ready”. The GT350 is the former, NOT the latter.

  • Jeff

    Wait. So the people who chose the Tech package instead of the Track Package are mad that it can’t keep up on a track? Of course I’m assuming these are the 2016 owners we are talking about since it mentions base model and Tech package model.

  • Jeff

    Seems like they are mad because they chose plush heated seats over the additional coolers when they bought their 350. A little bit of buyers remorse I think. Every review and marketing info i saw for the first model year, clearly stated if you want to track the car, you should choose the track package. That you couldn’t have both luxury and track capability in this performance vehicle

  • beltedmagnum

    Buyers remorse when the Camaro’s started kicking butt on track day LOL

  • Terry Gandy

    The issue is with the pre-2017 models, only. The Tech Package did not have certain cooling features (e.g., transmission cooler), which prevented overheating. It could be a sort of buyer’s remorse, I suppose, when one wanted electric seats, seat heaters, etc, but also wanted to run it hard on the track. My 2017 has the track pack accessories plus the convenience – the best of both worlds.

  • Chris Daigle

    Sooo. The track pack option didn’t offer a clue? But they wanted the track pack and ordered the fancy techy comfort option instead?

  • Eric Wilmot

    No. They are all “track pack”, the technology pack is the only option on the gt350.

  • Frank Yoster

    Psh garbage..at least dodge can put out bulletproof engines in their hellcats and vipers and srts…smh

  • Chris Daigle

    So maybe getting the technology pack effectively removes the track pack?

  • bedr1

    Here is the thing, if you ordered one from the factory, that’s one thing, but if they are on the showroom floor and they don’t tell you the various options between the one car they have on the floor and something you can order later in a 17 model…whole different ball game. I’m pretty sure that’s why they are making all the ’17 with tranny coolers and differential coolers standard ..oops

  • bedr1

    You are assuming people ordered from the factory…when many people purchase floor models and they only have one choice

  • Gonzo Angrymonkey

    I’m looking at the GT350 owners manual (supplement to, printed in July 2015), it says if you want to race or operate at high speed, either the base or tech model, you should install oil coolers for both the transmission and rear differential. But then these same base and tech models also have switchable drive modes with two of these modes being “drag” and “track” mode? Why build a track mode into the control systems if not supposed to be tracked? And also related: the car’s programmable information display has both transmission temp and rear diff temp gauges available, so the owners can’t really say theirs overheated without any warning.

    In any case, congrats to Ford and the GT350R team for winning the IMSA Grand Sport 120 race at Sebring last weekend (beating out the 2nd and 3rd place McLaren GT4s and 4th place Porsche).

  • Sergio Serrano

    This was the last place I expected to find a spoiler… Thanks bro.

  • Chris Daigle

    Yeah, those slow Shelby Stangs beat out everyone last year in the CSSC and hold the top two places this year among the crowds of Porches, McClarens, Aston Martins etc. Slow indeed. Camaro didn’t even show up this year.

  • beltedmagnum

    I want to see how bad a Shelby 350 gets spanked by a SS1LE LMAO it would be a blood bath with all the Mustang owners killing themselves. I’m talking factory production cars not race prepped cars you are talking about.

  • Chris Daigle

    That’s called moving the goal posts. Set up both cars to GT4 spec so you can see which is better.
    I just hope for their sake Chevy doesn’t repeat what happened with the last Camaro where they would overheat.

  • And this is ALL because of the “Marketing Department” inside FORD! Slicing and dicing marketing terms regardless of the meaning. You can bet FORD lawyers will say – ‘once around the track’ means ‘Track Ready’ !!

    FORD’S REPUTATION is on the line here.

  • Gonzo Angrymonkey

    Yea their legal case boils down to semantics, probably should have called that one driver mode “autocross” or “autox” instead of “track”. Ford’s defense more or less rests on their fine print in the manual stating to race or operate at high speeds, you need an R model or have oil coolers installed like the R model’s.

  • thorn

    A mustang with tranny and differential issues. Shocker.

  • Terry Gandy

    There are always choices – do nothing is a choice. I hope no one held a gun to their head and made them sign on the dotted line. Or, possibly, they had no choice because they couldn’t control their desire to have it NOW. Otherwise, I’m not sure what no choice means when the internet is loaded with car shopping sites.