Ford recently announced that it will recall certain 2021 model year F-150 pickups. The reason is that the automatic transmission may slip from drive into neutral while the vehicle is in motion. Obviously, the sudden loss of torque could lead to a crash. The manufacturer determined that a computer software error causes this to happen – the truck erroneously senses that the transmission fluid pressure is too low, and automatically goes into a sequence designed to protect the transmission from damage. If the fluid pressure was actually low, the vehicle would give drivers time to pull over.
This problem involves F-150 models with the 5.0L, 3.5L and 2.7L engines not equipped the Auto Start-Stop Technology. The transmissions all have the internal code of 10R80. They were assembled between July 28, 2021, and December 20, 2021.
What to expect
While the truck will obviously begin to coast, owners may also notice a wrench symbol illuminated on the vehicle dashboard (near the speedometer). The vehicle may automatically go into Park once the vehicle stops. According to the manufacturer, the driver can “reboot” the software by turning the vehicle off and then starting it. Drivers should not attempt to do this while the vehicle is still moving.
Ford notified the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of the issue, admitting that there were 28 warranty claims related to the software error. Fortunately, there are currently no reports of crashes or injuries. The recall will officially begin on May 2, 2022. The dealerships will fix this issue by updating the transmission software.
Take action immediately
Vehicle owners who experience this issue should notify the manufacturer or a dealer immediately. If the outcome is unsatisfactory, it may be necessary to discuss options with a Lemon law attorney who practices here in California.