The Iowa Attorney General’s office said Tuesday that Ford Motor will pay $19.2 million to resolve allegations it falsely advertised real-world fuel economy and payload capacity for some hybrid and pickup trucks.
The multi-state disposal includes the 2013-2014 C-Max hybrid and the 2011-2014 Super Duty pickups. In 2013, Ford lowered the advertised fuel economy rating on its C-Max hybrid to seven miles per gallon and sent checks to owners for $550 to make up the difference in fuel costs.
“For years, Ford advertised impressive fuel economy and payload capacity for its cars and trucks,” said Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller. “Unfortunately, these figures were not based on reality; customers had vehicles that did not meet their standards.”
The agreement, with 40 states and the District of Columbia, prohibits Ford from making false or misleading advertising claims related to the estimated fuel economy or payload capacity of a new motor vehicle. Ford did not admit to wrongdoing as part of the agreement. Ford did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
New Jersey Attorney General Matthew Platkin said Ford misrepresented that while consumers could drive on a single tank of gas, the driving style would not affect the vehicles’ real-world fuel economy and were better real than other hybrids. Claims the world’s fuel economy.
Plattkin said that Ford ran deceptive advertisements called “Hybrid Games” that sounded like an Olympic sport in which the Ford C-Max was shown to outperform the Toyota Prius in a series of videos.
The states allege that Ford used a deceptive methodology to retrieve “best in class” payload capacity after other trucks had overtaken Ford.
“In calculating the maximum payload capacity of its vehicles, the investigation found, Ford employed a truck configuration that it did not actually intend to sell to individual buyers – which included spare wheels, tires and standard features such as jacks, radios and hubs. Objects left out. Console (which was replaced by mini-console), “Platkin said.
As a result, “Ford was able to add an extra pound to the maximum advertiseable payload capacity of its Super Duty trucks – enough for Ford to reclaim the title of ‘Best-in-Class’ for payloads.”