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Gillette News

new 12/15/02 - source

Local News - Gillette, Wyoming
Sunday, December 15, 2002
Local couple might join lawsuit over car

Raymond and Mary Hansen bought a 1996 Super High Output Ford Taurus in June.

Now, the Gillette couple find themselves among 10,000 potential plaintiffs against Ford after two SHO owners in Illinois filed a lawsuit Tuesday in Chicago alleging that Ford Motor Co. concealed a defect with the car's high-performance V8 engine which causes engine damage and high-cost repairs.

The complainants in the lawsuit are Larry Eck of Wheaton, Ill., and Timothy Wright of Decatur, Ill.

The lawsuit charges Ford with two counts of fraud and one count of breach of implied warranty and says that Ford sold a vehicle "not fit for ordinary driving." The lawsuit also seeks class-action status to gather other SHO owners with the same problem.

The Hansens say they experienced the same problem while driving their new car in the Big Horns in June two weeks after they bought it.

Coming down Powder River Pass, the engine began misfiring. Next, the "check engine" light came on only moments before the power steering and power breaks in the car shut down.

With continual attempts to turn the key, Raymond Hansen couldn't restore complete order but managed to get enough of the car's juices flowing to control it and steer it down the hill to a safe stop.

Since the breakdown, the car has sat and continues to sit outside the Hansens' home. After looking for auto mechanics, the Hansens say they found the estimated repair bill to be $15,000, plus labor.

"The price to fix them is more than the car's worth," Mary Hansen said.

-- For a complete story, see Sunday's News-Record

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