— A Ford class action lawsuit has been filed over a destination charge, or what Ford calls its destination and delivery fee when shipping a new vehicle to a dealership.
The lawsuit alleges Ford deceives consumers by making a profit from the destination and delivery fee.
The Ford class action lawsuit was filed by California plaintiff Mary Hawkins who purchased a new 2019 Lincoln MKX in July 2019.
The plaintiff says she looked at the window sticker and saw the $995 destination and delivery fee, but the plaintiff says she didn't know Ford made a profit from the fee.
Hawkins claims she has been "damaged by Ford’s material representations and omissions regarding the Destination & Delivery fee."
The plaintiff says she overpaid for her Lincoln MKX because Ford didn't tell her it made a profit from the destination and delivery fee. According to Hawkins, reasonable consumers would not know Ford made a profit from the destination charge to deliver a vehicle to a dealership.
"By virtue of the name of the fee itself, Ford misleads reasonable consumers into believing its 'Destination & Delivery' fee reflects the actual cost of shipping its vehicles to their 'destination,' not the cost of shipping its vehicles plus profit." — Ford class action lawsuit
The lawsuit includes:
"All consumers who, during the applicable statute of limitations, purchased or leased a Class Vehicle in the state of California and paid a Destination & Delivery fee."
According to the plaintiff, it's "deceptive and unfair" for Ford to make a "significant amount" of profit from its destination charge. However, the plaintiff doesn't allege how much profit Ford makes from each vehicle.
The Ford destination charge is allegedly not a legitimate charge related to the cost of delivering vehicles to dealers at the point of sale. According to the plaintiff, she "has consequently suffered ascertainable losses and actual damages as a result of Ford’s unlawful conduct."
The class action also alleges Ford's destination charge over the past 10 years isn't correlated with increases in shipping costs.
"That is why other automakers 'destination fees' have not increased at the same pace during this same ten-year period. Audi, BMW, Infiniti, Lexus, Lincoln, Mercedes-Benz and Volvo each grew their fees by less than 20 percent over the past decade."
While the plaintiff says she was charged $995 for a destination charge, the lawsuit alleges the fee charged on the Ford F-150 rose 42% in four years, from $1,195 in 2017 to $1,695 in 2021.
Ford has company when it comes to class action lawsuits filed over destination fees because the same lawyers also sued Chrysler and General Motors for allegedly making a profit on destination charges.
The Ford class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California: Mary Hawkins v. Ford Motor Company.
The plaintiff is represented by Kaliel Gold PLLC, and Kopelowitz Ostrow Ferguson Weiselberg Gilbert.