Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: Welcome to North America, Ford Fiesta. Thanks for bringing your herky-jerky transmission, numerous interior quality complaints, and an engine that dies while driving.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
12 / 0
Average Mileage:
45,063 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2011 Ford Fiesta drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2011 Ford Fiesta:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2011 Ford Fiesta Owner Comments (Page 8 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #70

Mar 032014

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 47,619 miles


Engine mil turned on after car was started, driving was fine at speeds under 45mph. Once over 45mph the vehicle started to shake violently. The engine code indicated that it was the natural vacuum leak detection (nvld) service kit, that had failed or a fuse in the fuse box. The vehicle was turned into a dealership and the part replaced, the engine mil turned back on before I claimed the vehicle and has been sitting with the dealer for 4 days, as they have no idea how to fix the car. This sensor failing is a known issue on this vehicle as there is a technical service bulletin dated Feb 13, 2013, this replaced a previous bulletin dated May 21, 2011. This sensor failing is dangerous and has been an issue since 2011. And it seems that there is no real fix, at least with my vehicle. The wording in the tsb states "some 2011 Fiesta vehicles may exhibit a malfunction indicator lamp (mil) with diagnostic trouble code (dtc) U029F set in the powertrain control module (PCM) and/or a no crank condition with no communication with the PCM." This leads me to believe that the engine could fail at anytime with this code, creating a hazardous condition especially if traveling on the freeway when the mil comes on and the part fails. This is a wide spread issue based on the abundance of forums and internet posts discussing this exact engine code, and the various symptoms associated with it.

- Canton, MI, USA

problem #69

Mar 042014


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford Fiesta. The contact stated that while traveling various speeds, the vehicle suddenly stalled. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was found that the transmission needed to be rebuilt. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 70,000.

- Fountain Hills, AZ, USA

problem #68

Feb 192014


  • 35,000 miles
With 1" of snow on the ground the vehicle stopped. The advance-trac control shut down the engine just because the wheels started to spin. This caused a large traffic tie up and a snow plow had to help get the car rolling again. There is no way to disable this traction control like in other Ford automobiles.

- Goffstown, NH, USA

problem #67

Feb 062014

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 37,300 miles


The traction control on my 2011 Fiesta is a death trap. There is no option on my specific car to disable the system. In mild snow or slush, the vehicle loses all power to the wheels as soon as tcs engages. I got stuck at the bottom of my driveway. Today, 2/14/14 I was nearly killed when the car got stuck in 4" of snow & was partially in the lane of a busy roadway (I was attempting to turn into the parking lot to my place of employment). My fiance' & our 8 yr old son (who is a factor 9 hemophiliac) were screaming and scared to death as the car was helpless to move away from oncoming traffic. This is an issue that later year 2011, 2012, & 2013 models have the option to turn off this function however there is no way to add this feature to my car. If I or my family are injured due to this issue I will sue Ford & NHTSA for allowing this vehicle to be sold with this kind of safety problem.

- Levittown , PA, USA

problem #66

Jan 212014


  • 57,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford Fiesta. While the vehicle was parked when the rpms increased and it began to roll backwards. The driver had to jump into the vehicle and apply the brakes in order to stop the vehicle from moving; however, the vehicle crashed into a porch post. The failure was not diagnosed nor was the vehicle inspected. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the incident. The approximate failure mileage was 57,000.

- Neosho, MO, USA

problem #65

Nov 142013

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 67,300 miles
In parking lot, turned car on and into reverse, car would not go anywhere, tried drive and couldn't go anywhere even with increased acceleration. Turned off car and back on again, again same type of things happened. Took me 4 times to turn off car and back on again before I was able to go into reverse to get out of the parking spot. My "sync" didn't say anything was wrong.

- Lake Forest, CA, USA

problem #64

Jan 282014

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 69,920 miles


In parking lot, started car, placed car in drive and nothing happened, accelerated and couldn't go anywhere. Turned off car and started again, again same thing happened. Turned off car again and restarted, finally car was able to go into drive and accelerate.

- Lake Forest, CA, USA

problem #63

Jul 162012

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 25,000 miles
Driving in traffic normal speed about 40-45 mph, vehicle stopped accelerating completely. Normal commute & almost got rear ended since the car started to decelerate quickly. Once we were able to pull off to the side of the road we tried switching the gears and restarting the car. After this, the car would not restart at all. Taken the car to Ford multiple times and they have ran all sorts of diagnostics and we find ourselves at the dealership at least every 2-3 months with issues. Ford corporate did nothing but provide extended warranty. What would they have done if we were actually rear ended & severely hurt because of the faulty car? unfortunately an extended warranty does not correct he problem & this vehicle is still jeopardizing my family's safety and we'll being.

- North Lauderdale , FL, USA

problem #62

Dec 012013


  • 30,000 miles
Took vehicle in for oil change around 30K miles, tech called me back to show me oil leak. Further investigation found oil leaking from head gasket and crank shaft caps. Everything replaced under warranty. 10K-15K miles later same issue happens again. Everything fixed under warranty again. Few thousand miles later my wife backs out of driveway and there is a puddle of oil under the car again. I got rid of the car before failure again and warranty is expired. Car always handled well, great gas mileage. Terrible acceleration and quirky transmission.

- Bethalto, IL, USA

problem #61

Jan 092014


  • 88,000 miles
Driving on the freeway going normal speeds the "transmission failure" message popped up on my dash and the car started viscously jerking. The car had trouble stopping as if the brakes couldn't function properly cause the transmission was out. My car would fiercely jerk forward when I was coming to a stop that I then noticed I had to stop further back than normal in fear of the car jerking forward to hard and hitting the car in front of me. When I finally parked and was ready to go to a well lit area the car started up perfectly normal and the transmission failure message was gone. Took it to Ford and they couldn't understand the severity of the issue due to the fact that the car basically "fixed itself." I then asked them if it is going to take someone getting into an accident for them to recall the transmission on this car and they only told me "there's nothing they can do about it". they saw an issue and told me it would be approx. 3 thousand dollars to fix the car is only 2 years old. Ford also told me the car isn't safe for me to drive on the road. Yet they don't see that as a reason to not recall the cars to get it fixed since I'm positive my car isn't the only one that has done this. I guess myself almost getting into and accident and causing injury to myself and others is not a good enough reason for them.

- Fontana, CA, USA

problem #60

May 232012


  • 8,000 miles


When driving the car, the transmission makes bad noises when it is shifting. It jerks, grinds, and shifts erratically. I have taken the car to the dealership multiple times and have been told that although it is a real issue, it is normal. I have been to Ford dealerships at least three times and have been told that it is normal.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #59

Jan 112011


  • 72,500 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford Fiesta. The contact stated that the clutch would not engaged properly and caused the vehicle to stall while driving 15 mph. The contact took the vehicle to a dealer to have the clutch replaced but the repair did not remedy the issue. The failure mileage was 72,500.

- Mineral Bluff , GA, USA

problem #58

Dec 302013


  • 62,000 miles
My car's transmission is likely going out. Was driving up my driveway and was stuck for 15 minutes with the car half in the driveway and half on street. Tried reverse, forward...but nothing. Car has been sitting since 12/20. I did a vehicle health report thru my sync and it claims everything is "good" but yet the engine light is on! no sure where to turn or what to do next. Extremely discouraged and disappointed. Thought Ford finally had their act together!

- Blaine, MN, USA

problem #57

Oct 172013

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles
Vehicle has the all too common "leaky seals" at the clutches on the tranny. Had contacted Ford prior-was told that the shuddering and rough shift was normal. Little did I know it was failing. The seals have failed, caused oil/fluid to get onto the clutches. Ford pulled tranny apart, twice, put back together and car shutters so bad they refuse to return it to me. Claim "too unsafe to return to you". Ford then instructed dealer to "order new replacement parts (3rd time) and replace-the replacement parts used must have been defective." Before parts arrived, Ford cancelled order. Informed me "there is no repair available for this issue. There is Fiesta and Focus's held up at dealerships all over the country. We can put you in a rental for 6 to 8 weeks and hopefully in that time Ford will figure out a way to fix this issue." I asked Ford why they don't replace the transmission with a new one, was told "no, the new ones have the same defect and they too will fail as well. Ford has had my car since mid October 2013.....currently no fix avail......lemon law vehicle!

- Tracy, CA, USA

problem #56

Jul 012013


  • 29,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford Fiesta. The contact stated that while traveling at various speeds, the vehicle suddenly stalled. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was found that first and third gear had failed. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 29,000.

- Williamsport, PA, USA

problem #55

Oct 152013

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
Referring to previous complaint #10546964, vehicle was towed to a Ford dealership for examination and repair after opening case # with Ford Motor Company and referencing research that points to a systemic problem with Fiestas. Shop had vehicle for three days and reported a repair had been completed, a computer "update." Car was retrieved and after 30 miles of driving +/- same problem returned when transmission stopped working and no gear could be found. Turning the car on and off was not easily done and on more than one occasion there was no response when trying to start the car. On at least two occasions, the problem occurred on a two lane road with no emergency lane so vehicle was stopped on us 321 with no immediate way to move it to a safe area. Since it was after 8:00 P.M. traffic was minimal. When the car was started finally, we were able to get it home by not going over 30 mph. This is a dangerous situation that does not seem isolated to this one car. This is the same problem that was not diagnosed when the car was in my possession for less than one month. The recommended fix, at over $100, did not result in any resolution of the problem. There appears to be a problem with the Fiesta transmission and the communication it receives from the computer rendering the vehicle completely immobilized and unable to function.

- Mountain City, TN, USA

problem #54

Nov 012012

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
I have had numerous instances of my car just dying on the road. The first time this happened, I was making a turn into my subdivision in front of oncoming traffic. When I hit the gas my car slowly rolled into the middle of the street. Luckily the oncoming drivers were paying attention and slowed down enough to not hit me. I pulled off the road, put the car in park and restarted it. This happened on and off but the dealer could never find an issue. To start it was no more than once a day but this weekend it happened at almost every stop. It continues to have this issue. When I stop at a light or stop sign it rumbles and cuts off. It has gotten so bad that I'm afraid to drive down busy streets. I keep my radio off just so I can be sure to hear when this happens otherwise I'll be caught in the middle of oncoming traffic again. In addition to this most recent issue, the car had multiple issues in the past. The first month that I purchased this car it would just not turn on most mornings, or even after being off for a short amount of time.

- Spring, TX, USA

problem #53

Sep 152013

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 55,600 miles
I bought this car used with 35000 miles on it. The first thing I noticed was when starting or stopping the car would shudder, like it was gripping and couldn't catch a gear. I normally drive hwy, and I notice no problems when going above 45mph. However I was in stop and go traffic and I thought the car was going to stall on me numerous time, it would shake and make grinding sounds. This car is an automatic and I thought I was driving a manual, that's what it felt like, like I didn't have the clutch in and was coming to a stop. Well about 3 weeks ago when I was pulling up to a stop light, the car stalled completely. Just turned off, and it really scared me. Since then the car has stalled 3 times, each time as I am coming to a stop. I took it in after each time it stalled and I am told that since no check lights came on there is no way they can diagnose anything. I mentioned the shuddering as well, and they gave me a print out with the "usual" feelings associated with the particular transmission that is on my car. I am pissed and very dissatisfied, I love this car, the look, the interior, the electronic upgrades are awesome but these issues with the transmission are miserable. I am scared driving my car. I just want Ford to recognize this problem and help us out. We are buying their product, you would think they would fix these issues.

- Anza, CA, USA

problem #52

Jul 012013


  • 50,000 miles
The first incident occurred on start of the vehicle. The car would not go into gear. No lights came on and problem could not be replicated. Stopped, restarted and worked fine next incident at highway speed.. the car revved up and then was unresponsive to accelerator. Had to coast off highway, stop car and restart.. immediately after took to dealer who did a software update about a month ago. Yesterday, had multiple incidents in stop and go traffic where car became unresponsive to accelerator in the middle of heavy traffic and while exiting highway and light did come on. This car makes me fear for my life. Car is back at dealership and I will never drive it again as there is no warning as to when this malfunction will occur. There is a serious defect that people need to be warned about. I will be trading mine asap.

- Cataula, GA, USA

problem #51

Aug 092013

Fiesta 4-cyl

  • 49,000 miles
While driving the expressway at ~4:00am through downtown detroit my vehicle lost all power to accelerate. There were no instrument indicators, but the transmission would not respond to accelerator pedal compression. Fortunately, there was lighter than usual traffic at the time, but normally it would have been very difficult to safely move a disabled vehicle from the extreme left to the right side shoulder without engine/transmission control. The vehicle is currently at a fmc dealership awaiting inspection/repair. I submit this report because I feel, based on numerous other reports I've read, that the Fiesta may be a safety concern.

- Dearborn Heights, MI, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?