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Claire Bersee - Cam Failure # 226

new 2/22/03, updated 3/6/03

Hi Tim,

Please add my name ( my Mom & Dad are helping me with this) as I bought a beautiful red '97 at the end of the year.....as of Feb 2, it's dead. I'm a high school senior trying to save money for car and college....and now all I have is a big (for me) loan to pay off and no car to drive. Really stinks. In fact my brother is at this moment picking my motionless car up from a shop with his truck and car trailer to bring it home for storage in my grandpa's barn before we decide what action to take. Any suggestions welcome!

Thanks - sure wish we had known about this info site before we bought it. It's such a beautiful car and I was so proud to have it.

Sad and Mad in Ohio:

Claire Bersee
Waterville OH
Red "97, 

Hi Tim - -

Sorry this took, so long to get to you. Claire was stranded at a dark & lonely country crossroads when her SHO died. And as her parents, we had to interrupt a late Sunday dinner with other relatives to go sit with her until the tow truck came. She lost 2-3 hours work time, including potential tips. That tow truck took the car to our little town of Waterville, but had to come back 2 days later and take it in to Toledo. So, 2 tows and a half-diag fee of $45.00 added to loss of wages.

For the next month, we had to juggle other family cars and drivers around to accommodate Claire's work schedule. What a pain!!

As of now, we have resurrected the old 211,000 mile Dodge Dakota (about $600 of repairs and counting) to get it roadworthy for her work use.

We are still checking severity of the cam failure, but are interested in the Warren welding, if even feasible. Still considering just selling the shell and, for now cutting the loss, but Claire, of course, would love to have her SHO back!! We are busy getting all sorts of college forms and plans ready for her, so haven't had a whole bunch of time to spend on this right now. We will, however, NOT forget the fight!!! Preparing to add our names to list for class action lawsuit.

Thanks for listening!
Teri, Claire, and Jim Bersee

9220 Noward Rd.
Waterville OH 43566

February 7, 2003

Mr. William C. Ford, CEO
Ford Motor Company
1 American Rd.
Dearborn MI 48126-2798

Dear Mr. Ford,

I know you probably get a zillion of these letters a day, so I'll be lucky if I even receive an answer to this letter, even if it is a form letter.

I'm 18 years old and just last summer decided to attend a 4-year college instead of a vocational high school. So, I started working more and saving a lot more. My classy 1986 Cutlass Supreme had let me down one too may times around the holidays, so my parents and brother helped me locate a great used car: a 1997 Ford Taurus SHO with 105,00 miles on it. A fine car! My parents and brother felt it would be a good car for me to invest in because I would be taking it with me to college, and it would get me through. But of course I had to budget for it out of my own money.

I bought it from an individual owner in our community who kept very complete maintenance records on it. It was so clean and like new. We got title to it near the end of 2002, and finally I felt safe, in a safe car. It was much nicer for my job, which is working in a pizza shop and delivering pizzas after school in the afternoons, evenings and weekends. I was so proud of my car - - it almost seemed to good to be true. And unfortunately, it was.

Last Sunday night, Feb 2, 2003, the car just died at a stop sign. After towing it to 2 different shops, we got the bad news today that it needs a whole new engine. We had felt secure in my buying this car because most cars today, as my brother and parents tell me, don't even need tune-ups till 100,000 miles. We are pretty much in shock - - me especially because I have just lost $5500 that I could have put toward my college education.

My parents are either going to have to get it fixed for almost that amount again (and I'd be stuck with the same engine with 60,000 miles on it), or fix up an old beater truck sitting in our driveway for me to drive. I'm really sad, disappointed and angry about this. I finally afforded a newer car, only to have it leave me without wheels and in the hole financially for a long time.

I know it's out of warranty and you supposedly have nothing to do with it, but PLEASE, PLEASE, can you please help me in someway with this mess? It just isn't right that such a nice car would bomb out at this time after being so carefully maintained. Something must have been terribly wrong from the beginning. From what we've been told, valves are bent and pistons might well be shot because of a timing gear that went bad. I really need a car for traveling to work and college. Can you suggest any other type of engine that might be used in this beautiful shell of a car? While I must continue to make payments on what should have been a lovely ride for a decent time, my new wheels don't turn, and I'm backed in a corner financially. In other words, I'm screwed.


Claire S. Bersée

P.S. Vin # 1FALP54N0VA130718

Only now did we just learn of the "V8SHO.com" website, which may help us understand what's going on here.

lc: Nicholas V. Scheele, President
Joseph Greenwell, Corporate Communications Director
Janet G. Velentic, Marketing Executive
Dennis E. Ross, General Counsel
Director, Engineering and Design

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