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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been lurking in these forums since I purchased my first Ford product on October 11th, 2011. I had considered posting my story in the forums way earlier, but I have been turned off by both the outright bashing of Ford by people having issues as well as the blind defense of Ford by the "Fanatics" who have "perfect" vehicles and experiences. I have read pages and pages of information about issues being had by 2012 Focus users and I am intelligent enough to weed out those who will complain about every little thing versus those who are doing everything on their part to try and get their vehicle to a point of just working as it should. So onto my (long-winded) story:

I traded in a perfectly good 2010 Audi A5, not because I was in over my head, not because I could no longer afford it, but because I was genuinely excited about the 2012 Ford Focus. As a person who has owned two Volkswagens, two BMWs, and an Audi, stepping foot into an American car was already risky, especially coming from a family that has only bought foreign since I can remember. I felt that Ford was moving in a great direction as a brand, and I had a lot of confidence in their company knowing that they did not partake in the bailout that the other American automakers received. For the first time, I felt intrigued by an American car and believed I had a good reason to support the “buy American” push. On October 11th I found a model equipped just as I wanted and contacted Ken Grody Ford in Buena Park. Although the website showed that the vehicle was at their dealership I was told once there that it was actually at their Carlsbad dealership about 60 miles away. They offered to let me test drive one of the Focus on the lot so I could get a feel for it. The test drive went well and the car drove great. After the standard wheeling and dealing and coming to an agreement on sale price and trade-in value, they had an employee drive the car up from Carlsbad and I took delivery that night.

The first week I had the car I noticed some odd sounds and vibrations during acceleration. I have a 30-mile commute each way to work and deal with a good amount of stop-and-go traffic. The more I drove, the more noticeable the grinding sounds and vibrations became. On October 15th, while driving in the West Hollywood area of Los Angeles, I came to a complete stop at a light on a steep hill at Sunset Blvd and La Cienega where I was in bumper-to-bumper traffic. When the light turned green the cars in front of me moved forward and I pressed on the gas to go up the hill, there was absolutely no response besides full throttle revving as I tried to urge the car forward. Instead of moving forward the car began to roll back and before I could step on the brake I had rolled about two-feet back into the bumper of a large moving truck. It wasn’t until I was propped up against the truck’s bumper that I could get the car to move forward normally. I pulled over and talked to the driver of the truck, explained my situation, and offered up my information. The driver saw no damage to his truck’s bumper, and he let me go without taking down any information. My Focus had scratches on both sides of the rear bumper where I had made contact with the truck. The following day I had a similar issue where I was parallel parked on a hill in my neighborhood and was unable to maneuver out of the spot without rolling back into the car behind me, so rather than take that chance I used my girlfriend’s car for the rest of the day.

On Monday, October 17th, I took my car into the dealership and explained the situation I had that weekend. I expressed my concern with the fact that a brand new car could not get up the hill I live on well enough for me to park and maneuver on a daily basis, to the point of causing an accident. I was put in contact with the service manager Eric Romanoff, who took a test drive with me so I could show him the issue. The area around the dealership is very flat and it was difficult to find a hill for him to experience the issue. Just as we were turning back into the dealership, the vehicle made the loud grinding noise associated with accelerating and Eric acknowledged that he heard something that sounded like “a chain being dragged through the transmission.” He checked it in for service at 440 miles and kept it for two days, returning it to me with the suggestion from Ford’s hotline to drive it for 1000 miles to let the transmission break-in.

On October 19th while driving to work, the MyFord Touch system froze and all controls based around the system did not function. I got to work and parked, turned off the car, and the MFT system and screen stayed on, I waited for nearly 20 minutes until I unplugged the car battery to ensure that the frozen system did not drain the car of power. I took the car in and was told I needed to get the latest software. I took the Ford shuttle service to work and picked up the car that evening.

On October 20th I had the exact same issue occur with the MFT system as the day before. The next day the transmission issue flared up more seriously than before, causing violent shaking and the feeling of near stalling multiple times on the freeway. On October 24th my Focus was checked in to the dealership at 767 miles for the MFT issue as well as to check the transmission again. During the time the dealership had the vehicle they ordered and replaced the Sync module to resolve the MFT issue. This time they found the11-10-2 TSB pertaining to the transmission issues and updated the software as per Ford. The dealership also had a Field Service Engineer road test the car and conduct a “rapid break-in session,” which I later found to mean that the engineer drove the car “hard.” He contacted me directly and told me that these issues I was having were because of this new type of transmission (the PowerShift dual-clutch transmission) being different than a regular automatic and that it needed to be broken-in to “learn the way I drive.” He also stated that there was a grease compound used on the clutches of the early batches of Focus that was adding to the “shuffling” noises I heard during shifting. Again, I was told that 1000 miles should fix this issue. I was returned my vehicle on November 1st and was told to bring it in after 1000 miles just to check and see if there were any remaining issues.

I drove the car for well past 1000 miles hoping for the best, all while dealing with the freezing MFT system and now dealing with a constant squeak and rattle from the driver’s B-pillar. On November 17th I was attending a meeting for work at a hotel where valet was required, I left the vehicle with the attendants and went about my day. When I returned to the valet stand, the attendant told me that they had issues with my stereo and that they could turn off the electronics in the car, so they intermittently started the car to ensure the battery did not drain.

On November 21st I took the car back to the dealership and explained my recent issues, including the rattling/squeaking B-pillar, the MFT freezing, and worsening of the transmission issue. I requested that I test drive a new Focus exactly like mine from their inventory to see if any of the transmission issues were noticeable in order to confirm what Ford has continuously claimed is “normal working condition.” It was easily noticeable that my car performed nothing like the Focus from their inventory after a 30-minute drive with a salesperson, thus proving my vehicle did not perform similarly to a new Focus. My car was checked in for service with 1884 miles. At this time I expressed concerns about the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday break, and that I had planned on driving home 500-plus miles each way to Arizona. Because the car was not ready by the holiday, I had to change my plans and stay in the LA area instead of with my family. During this stint at the dealership, the B-pillar construction was found to be loose and was secured, and the 11-10-2 TSB was once again performed to alleviate the transmission issues. The Focus was returned to me on November 28th to test out the transmission and was told I had to come back to get the Sync module replaced again for the MFT freezing issue.

While all of this was going on, it was recommended by Eric Romanoff that I speak with Ford’s Customer Care hotline and request a replacement or vehicle buy-back and express all of my concerns. Eric explained that there is only so much a dealership can do in this situation and that ultimately Ford would be the one to make a decision. He also stated that if Ford was unwilling to be reasonable about resolving the situation it may be necessary for me to look into getting a lawyer and filing a California Lemon Law claim since I was racking up repair attempts and days out of service. I went ahead and called the Ford hotline and made sure all of my information was in their hands.

I took the car back to the dealership November 29th for the Sync replacement and reported no improvements to the transmission issue, with grinding, shaking, clunking, and near-stalling as present as ever. The Focus was returned to me December 2nd and I was told that after their road test and a call to Ford’s service hotline that there were no issues with the vehicle and it was under “normal working condition.” On the drive home from the dealership in rush hour stop-and-go traffic on Interstate 5 in the heart of Los Angeles, the Focus started to beep and flash warnings: “Transmission too hot,” “Transmission overheating – press brake,” “Transmission overheating – please wait 8 minutes.” On one of the busiest freeways in the country with no emergency lanes on a Friday afternoon I am supposed to “wait 8 minutes.” I got off the freeway as quickly as possible and did what it asked, I even waited 30 minutes. Instead of turning around and taking it straight back to the dealership I decided to try and replicate the issue and get it on video. As I approached the hill up to my house I turned on my cell phone camera and recorded what it did. I captured on video as it struggled to gain any forward motion, it clunked and grinded, and ultimately gave me the same beeping and flashing warnings on the driver’s display. I let the car recover for a day and then took it out again on December 4th to take some more video. Again and again the car grinds and clunks through 1st, 2nd and 3rd gear and struggles finding any power to make it up a hill. See video: http://youtu.be/O1IAimmSpzA

On December 5th, I took the Focus back to Ken Grody Ford and sat with Debbie Buziecki, Customer Relations Manager, and Eric Romanoff and had them watch the videos. Eric finally realized what my multiple complaints were pertaining to and asked for a copy of the videos to send to Ford along with all of the service tickets pertaining to the car. He noted that Ford Customer Care had contacted him about my case and that it sounds like they may do the right thing and find a suitable resolution for the situation. My Focus was taken in for service that day with 2,154 miles.

On December 8th, Eric Romanoff called me and ask if I would be willing to take a drive with the Field Service Engineer who was there to test my vehicle. He wanted me to drive to a location that I knew would replicate the issue with the beeping and warnings to show the Engineer the issue. I refused to do so because I was at work and had no time to leave my job to drive around and figure out an issue that I believe is their job to resolve, especially after taking so much of my own time to deal with this situation. A few hours later Eric notified me that he was able to replicate the issue I was having and that he had the Engineer there with him to experience it. He told me he would get back to me once they had any more information, but assured me that Ford would have all of this information documented for reference while making a decision on my case.

After a week of no updates, I began calling Ford’s hotline on a daily basis starting December 12th looking for any new information. I finally reached Mark Johnson, a member of the Customer Care team put on my case, on December 15th when he told me that they are still working on my case and should have a decision in the next week as to my situation, but that my car would be ready to be picked up later that day. I heard nothing from Ken Grody Ford for the next few days about my car. This was an issue for me as my plan for the holiday was again to drive home to Arizona on December 16th, and I was told that if my vehicle repair was completed while I was gone, I would have to pay for the rental until I picked up my car. So I was put into limbo by the fact that I was never given a finish date and thus had to reschedule my holiday plans yet again because of an issue with this car that I did not cause.

On Saturday, December 16th I received a FedEx letter from Ford stating that my vehicle does not meet requirements for buy-back through California’s Lemon Law and that my case was closed. I contacted Eric Romanoff immediately and asked him if he knew anything about this, he was as surprised as I was about the decision. He did not understand how a decision could be made without his final information pertaining to the service being conducted on my car that was STILL AT THE DEALERSHIP. He told me they were attempting to fix the issue by replacing the clutch and that the car didn’t even have the transmission re-installed at the time I received the letter. Eric couldn’t understand how Ford could have closed a case pertaining to the repair he was still working on. And with this being repair attempt 5 for the transmission (and more including all the other issues) and having now been out of commission for 36 days and counting, it has passed the requirements for California Lemon Law.

On Monday, December 19th, I called Mark Johnson to find out any further information about my vehicle and the premature decision made to not take any action on resolving my case. His explanation was that his team had nothing to do with the actual buy-back case, but with the repair that Ken Grody was working on and that those two situations did not tie into one another. The issue I have with this is that my buy-back request is SPECIFICALLY tied with that fact that my Focus has been at Ken Grody Ford being “repaired” for this exact issue for more time than I’ve had the car in my possession. On that date, I had owned this car 70 days and have been able to drive it about 30 of those days, and only a handful of those being days where I drove it without issue. On top of this, Ford and Ken Grody expected me to take the car on its first major test run post-repair and drive it 500 miles to Arizona when it can hardly even handle a 30 mile commute. I in turn reached out to Ford Customer Service online via this forum and twitter, hoping social media might be more helpful than their hotline. I received no response from their twitter team, and a "we'll look into your case and get back to you" from the forum's FCS posters with no further response.

On December 23rd, I met with a law firm in Los Angeles that specializes in Lemon Law cases, I did a lot of research to ensure it wasn't just some scum bag lawyer trying to make a quick buck (if there is such thing), and found a firm that had received tons of positive reviews. They listened to my story and looked over my documentation and told me they would be willing to take my case. On December 23rd the law firm sent the demand for settlement letter to Ford and I am still awaiting a response. They apparently have 45 days to respond, so time is ticking.

I really wish it didn't have to end this way (not that it has even ended). I still think the 2012 Focus is a great car in so many ways, the build and design is up to par with anything else I've driven, the interior materials and finish surpass those of cars in price levels way above its own, and everyone who has seen it or sat in it instantly understands why I could give up an Audi for it... until I start driving.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You must tell me how you traveled forward in time to buy a car in October of 2012....I MUST know THIS!!!
I asked Doc Brown if he could send me forward a year to see if Ford had released a TSB that actually fixed the transmission by then, apparently not.


So where is the car now? Is it performing as it should?
It's been sitting in my garage for about a month because I've been out of town for the holidays and for work, not that I'm eager to drive it. The day after I got it back from the dealership when they replaced the clutch assembly it did the same "transmission overheating, please wait XX minutes" while driving up the hill to my place. It drives and sounds just as bad as it did prior to the new clutch. I've been driving my GF's car since I've been back.
 

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Thanks for sharing your story with us. It seems you have done everything that can reasonably be expected and also that you have a good dealership that tried hard to make it right to no avail. I hope you get the car replaced. Thanks also for recognizing it is the car you bought and not all Fords that is the problem. you are handling your frustrations better than many have. Good luck on this issue.
 

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I asked Doc Brown if he could send me forward a year to see if Ford had released a TSB that actually fixed the transmission by then, apparently not.




It's been sitting in my garage for about a month because I've been out of town for the holidays and for work, not that I'm eager to drive it. The day after I got it back from the dealership when they replaced the clutch assembly it did the same "transmission overheating, please wait XX minutes" while driving up the hill to my place. It drives and sounds just as bad as it did prior to the new clutch. I've been driving my GF's car since I've been back.
since this warning occurred on a hill, its probably operating the way it should. The transmission does not have a temperature sensor, instead the computer monitors how you are driving and will give that message if you are driving in a manner that could possibly heat up the clutch. For that warning to go off, certain parameters of driving have to be met, the actual temperature of the transmission is not known. An example is going up a hill and "riding the clutch" excessively over a period of time will cause this warning message.

Before the message you got shows up, another message and chime will alert the driver to "Stop or Speed Up" (stop riding the clutch). The series of messages will increase the warnings before the transmission finally goes into neutral to protect itself.


Warning levels


The warning levels start with "Transmission Hot-Stop or Speed Up" plus a warning chime. The message may repeat with a slightly louder chime. If heat buildup continues, the next message is "Transmission Hot-Stop Safely."


If there's no suitable change in driver technique and temperature of the clutch continues to increase, the computer can induce some shift shudder and then display "Transmission Hot-Stop. Wait One Minute" (or subsequently, the same message with more minutes). If the peak temperature level is breached, that message may be accompanied by the DSG going into neutral.

But multiple warnings and then shudder come first. Neutral only occurs when the temperature peak is exceeded, after the multiple warnings. So the declutching is always within a gradual sequence, never abrupt, Rich said. When clutch assembly temperature drops sufficiently, "Transmission Ready" is displayed.

the full description of what you might be experiencing is here.

http://www.automotivedesign.eu.com/article/27775/Fords-new-dual-clutch-transmission-benefits-from-human-factors-engineering-virtual-sensing.aspx
 

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Discussion Starter #8
@FF4:
I understand that this is how the DCT is programmed to work (and had actually read that article during my research about my problem), but my issue is that there is apparently no resolution as to how to make the transmission work under my day-to-day driving situation. If driving up and down the hill to my home twice daily along with a 30-50 minute highway commute is going to cause the clutch to burn up after 2000 miles, will replacing the clutch become part of standard service like changing oil and such? I shouldn't be handcuffed to driving and parking in only certain areas because a car's transmission's algorithm can't compute how to manage the situation.

I understand the way this transmission works as I drove a VW with DSG, and I understand the way a manual works as I drove an Audi with a 6-spd manual. I understand the quirks, temperament, and mannerisms that come with non-automatic transmissions. In my Audi, if I was in first gear on the hill to my home I never needed to mash the gas to get up the hill. In the VW, I may have needed to feed a little more gas to get it going before rollback occurred. And in my gf's 2006 Kia Optima with 100k and a good old slush box I can creep up the hill with no issue at all. In the Focus, if I don't have a 10mph rolling start up the hill, I am most likely stuck looking for a parking spot somewhere at the bottom of the hill because I will struggle getting the car moving forward even at full throttle. And there is absolutely no chance I could park the Focus on the hill itself in a parallel parking spot with assurance that I'll be able to pull it out of the spot when needed if someone is right behind me and/or in front of me. But in the VW, Audi, and Kia (along with the onslaught of rentals I was put in) the toughest it ever got, while still achievable, was with the true manual in the Audi.

From your link: "Ford started with a simulator program in which "civilian" Ford employees tested a wide range of control strategies.

The simulator provided feel of road grade, including rollback on hills, and the "drivers" faced an instrument panel similar to that on the Fiesta. They were videotaped, including their foot positions, to see how they reacted to different IP messages, so the human factors engineers could see what worked and what some "drivers" tried to resist."


The Service Manager that worked on my car stated that even with all the testing Ford did, maybe I found a situation they were somehow not prepared for, and because there is no documentation from Ford given to them to pass on to consumers and educate them about this particular transmission's shortcomings or possible inabilities, he was worried that these situations would start to snowball until Ford is forced to figure something out.

So maybe my car is an anomaly and this serious of a problem doesn't come up at all for most owners, maybe the clutch won't burn out for most people after 2,000 miles, and maybe most owners don't live on hills that they have to parallel park on at times. The thing is, it did for me, and I don't live on Mt. Everest, and I don't intentionally abuse the transmission. The clutch slips when I am driving for whatever reason, blame the hill, blame stop-and-go traffic, or in Ford's case, blame my tendencies. But I've never needed to replace a clutch in any of my other non-automatic cars, especially after only 2000 miles.
 

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Perhaps your situation is the proverbial one in a million. On the other hand, if Ford had given us the wet-clutch DCT used in Europe and elsewhere, this would not be an issue. Guess the temptation of saving a few bucks per car was too great to ignore. Probably would have eliminated most of the clutch chatter complaints, too.
 

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@FF4:
I understand that this is how the DCT is programmed to work (and had actually read that article during my research about my problem), but my issue is that there is apparently no resolution as to how to make the transmission work under my day-to-day driving situation. If driving up and down the hill to my home twice daily along with a 30-50 minute highway commute is going to cause the clutch to burn up after 2000 miles, will replacing the clutch become part of standard service like changing oil and such? I shouldn't be handcuffed to driving and parking in only certain areas because a car's transmission's algorithm can't compute how to manage the situation.

I understand the way this transmission works as I drove a VW with DSG, and I understand the way a manual works as I drove an Audi with a 6-spd manual. I understand the quirks, temperament, and mannerisms that come with non-automatic transmissions. In my Audi, if I was in first gear on the hill to my home I never needed to mash the gas to get up the hill. In the VW, I may have needed to feed a little more gas to get it going before rollback occurred. And in my gf's 2006 Kia Optima with 100k and a good old slush box I can creep up the hill with no issue at all. In the Focus, if I don't have a 10mph rolling start up the hill, I am most likely stuck looking for a parking spot somewhere at the bottom of the hill because I will struggle getting the car moving forward even at full throttle. And there is absolutely no chance I could park the Focus on the hill itself in a parallel parking spot with assurance that I'll be able to pull it out of the spot when needed if someone is right behind me and/or in front of me. But in the VW, Audi, and Kia (along with the onslaught of rentals I was put in) the toughest it ever got, while still achievable, was with the true manual in the Audi.

From your link: "Ford started with a simulator program in which "civilian" Ford employees tested a wide range of control strategies.

The simulator provided feel of road grade, including rollback on hills, and the "drivers" faced an instrument panel similar to that on the Fiesta. They were videotaped, including their foot positions, to see how they reacted to different IP messages, so the human factors engineers could see what worked and what some "drivers" tried to resist."


The Service Manager that worked on my car stated that even with all the testing Ford did, maybe I found a situation they were somehow not prepared for, and because there is no documentation from Ford given to them to pass on to consumers and educate them about this particular transmission's shortcomings or possible inabilities, he was worried that these situations would start to snowball until Ford is forced to figure something out.

So maybe my car is an anomaly and this serious of a problem doesn't come up at all for most owners, maybe the clutch won't burn out for most people after 2,000 miles, and maybe most owners don't live on hills that they have to parallel park on at times. The thing is, it did for me, and I don't live on Mt. Everest, and I don't intentionally abuse the transmission. The clutch slips when I am driving for whatever reason, blame the hill, blame stop-and-go traffic, or in Ford's case, blame my tendencies. But I've never needed to replace a clutch in any of my other non-automatic cars, especially after only 2000 miles.
the VW 6 speed DCT you drove is slightly different. VW's newest 7 speed DCT is more like the Getrag unit in the Focus , which is a dry clutch.

The important difference between your VW and the Focus is the computer is only monitoring how you are driving, it is not monitoring temperature, its predicting conditions that may cause clutch wear and limiting what the driver can do to prevent damage. Basically its monitoring how much the clutch is slipping and providing a warning if its been too long. The algorithm is probably very conservative and intervening sooner than it needs to. The warning doesn't mean your clutch is fried, it means the computer is interevening to avoid frying the clutch.

I'm sure the brand new clutches were not fried the first time you drove home and up the hill, the computer just monitored how the vehicle was being operated on a hill (how long the clutches were slipping and not fully engaged) and gave that warning to alert the driver.

I live on a very steep hill and experienced what you described once, I was creeping along barely above idle as I maneuvered around some parked cars and then I reached a particulary steep portion, pressed the gas and nothing, the vehicle wouldn't move. I pressed the brake, let the hill assist hold the car, then pressed the gas again and let the clutch fully engage, it engaged fine and accelerated as any other car would. Before that I was basically riding the clutch and the computer intervened before it let me ruin my clutch. I was probaby "riding the clutch" for 30 seconds or so before the computer intervened.

Lesson learned, I now pay more attention when i'm on a steep hill and drive it like I would a real manual transmission. I now manually downshift to first gear before the steep part, I let the clutch fully engage and don't "ride the clutch", I use the parking brake if needed, I don't creep along at 1-2 mph for long.

As you said, you may have found some unique condition that the algorithm didn't plan for but I think its a simple calculatiuon of how long the clutches are slipping before the computer intervenes, at least that's what I think happened in my case.
 

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Perhaps your situation is the proverbial one in a million. On the other hand, if Ford had given us the wet-clutch DCT used in Europe and elsewhere, this would not be an issue. Guess the temptation of saving a few bucks per car was too great to ignore. Probably would have eliminated most of the clutch chatter complaints, too.
the reason dry clutches are used is because there's lower parasitic losses and therefore better mpgs. Dry clutch transmissions are the most fuel efficient transmission available. The electromechanical shifting makes it easier to adapt the engine start/stop features that will be common soon.

http://www.getrag.com/media/0000001557.pdf
 

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Yes, that's the argument. But it's also less complex and I'd guess quite a bit cheaper. In real-world conditions I'd gladly sacrifice a bit of mileage for a less-temperamental device. If mileage is the real issue, why is only the wet-clutch used on the Focus in Europe where fuel economy means even more?

Ford's press release when they announced this DCT said it offered up to a 9% improvement on fuel economy over a conventional 4 speed automatic, depending on application. Note the "up to" and "depending on application" and "conventional 4 speed automatic" qualifiers. I'd bet the savings compared to a modern 6 speed conventional automatic are pretty small. But again, I bet it's the cheaper device.
 

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the reason dry clutches are used is because there's lower parasitic losses and therefore better mpgs. Dry clutch transmissions are the most fuel efficient transmission available. The electromechanical shifting makes it easier to adapt the engine start/stop features that will be common soon.

http://www.getrag.com/media/0000001557.pdf
Well, they're as efficient (as far as parasitic losses) as a conventional manual gearbox.

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If mileage is the real issue, why is only the wet-clutch used on the Focus in Europe where fuel economy means even more?

Ford's press release when they announced this DCT said it offered up to a 9% improvement on fuel economy over a conventional 4 speed automatic, depending on application. Note the "up to" and "depending on application" and "conventional 4 speed automatic" qualifiers. I'd bet the savings compared to a modern 6 speed conventional automatic are pretty small. But again, I bet it's the cheaper device.
the Ford dry clutch is already in Europe, North America and Asia (page 38 of the Getrag Powerpoint), also "Focus Launches Dry-Clutch DCT Era for Ford in Europe http://www.dctfacts.com/latest-news/Focus-Launches-Dry-Clutch-Europe.aspx

believe it or not the UK Fiesta still has a 4 speed auto, soon to go to the new transmission. Renault is also using the same dry clutch DCT250.

Not sure if you read the Powerpoint from Getrag but it explains in detail how a DCT is 10-20% more efficient than a state of the art 6 speed planetary auto trans.

Ford says up to a 17% fuel economy benefit in production applications over a 6 speed AT, same with Renault. The Powerpoint shows the relative efficiency between a DCT and a 6 speed AT in each gear.

The DCT is never less than 90% efficient and goes up to 97% efficient, the AT is as low as 60% efficient
 

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Well, they're as efficient (as far as parasitic losses) as a conventional manual gearbox.

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this DCT stuff is pretty interesting the more I dig into it

according to Getrag

"Does the DCT have any advantage in fuel economy over a properly driven manual transmission?

In comparison to the equivalent 6-speed manual transmission, these first applications were homologated at f/e values approximately 3% higher.


How is it possible for a 6-speed dry DCT (no stop start) to have improved fuel efficiency over a typical 6-speed MT with equal spin loss and ratios and a driver that would emulate the shift schedule that would be used on the DCT?



The main reason is, that in the European (NEDC) homologation cycle the choice of gear is prescribed by the drive procedure when driving a manual transmission car, whereas any automatic will follow the shift schedule. The same applies to the Japanese cycle. In other cycles (e.g. the US Metro-Highway), with a lot of transient conditions, it will be far more difficult for even an experienced driver to always stay in the f/e sweet spot. which an automatically shifting transmission will do for you. This is particularly true if staying in the best f/e window would require skip shifts over two or more gears.




I am still unclear about the fuel economy advantages. What is the % improvement in fuel economy for a DCT compared to a 6-speed manual? And compared to a 6-speed automatic?


The contribution to this benefit is roughly split between:

Flexibility of gear ratio selection and adapted shift scheduling - 6%,
Neutral in idle- 8%
Torque converter losses - 3%
Mechanical losses - 2-3%

http://www.dctfacts.com/industry-at-a-glance/AEI-DCT-Webcast-QA-GETRAG-Ford.aspx
 

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the Ford dry clutch is already in Europe, North America and Asia (page 38 of the Getrag Powerpoint), also "Focus Launches Dry-Clutch DCT Era for Ford in Europe http://www.dctfacts.com/latest-news/Focus-Launches-Dry-Clutch-Europe.aspx

believe it or not the UK Fiesta still has a 4 speed auto, soon to go to the new transmission. Renault is also using the same dry clutch DCT250.

Not sure if you read the Powerpoint from Getrag but it explains in detail how a DCT is 10-20% more efficient than a state of the art 6 speed planetary auto trans.

Ford says up to a 17% fuel economy benefit in production applications over a 6 speed AT, same with Renault. The Powerpoint shows the relative efficiency between a DCT and a 6 speed AT in each gear.

The DCT is never less than 90% efficient and goes up to 97% efficient, the AT is as low as 60% efficient
This is all good information, even accepting it's from a marketing document from the DCT manufacturer. It is an interesting technology. With these compelling economy advantages, though:

Why does the 2013 Fusion offer only a conventional 6 speed automatic when paired with a gasoline engine?

Why is the automatic/manual EPA spread similar to comparable class cars with conventional automatics. My Focus is rated 27/37 with the DCT compared to 26/36 with a 5 speed manual - a 6 speed manual in the Focus would presumably narrow/eliminate the gap. A Honda Civic is 28/36 with a 5 speed manual vs 28/39 with a 5 speed automatic. A Cruze is 26/38 with a 6 speed manual or conventional automatic. An imperfect comparison, but it's hard to see the 10 or 17 or 20% claimed.

Again, a very interesting technology that I sure hope Ford gets to work correctly. I wonder though if Ford now thinks the small (if any) EPA gains were worth the hit to its reputation and sales the DCT's problems and "feel" have caused. After all, the Focus is being handily outsold by, of all things, the Cruze.
 

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the 2013 Fusion continues with the same transmission it currently has due to the power take off for the optional AWD and the higher torque engines it will have. The 2013 Fusion also has a brand new CVT transmission for the highest MPG models since those seem to work best with hybrids.

The DCT250 is meant for B and C class cars, Fiesta and Focus, not for the Fusion sized vehicle. The DCT 250 may eventually have AWD added to it, but I doubt anytime soon

As for the Cruze, why does its traditional transmission has so many problems? I don't know, I guess it just shows that even something routine and traditional can still have problems.

Oct 2011, The Consumer Reports Annual Auto Reliability Survey, released on Tuesday afternoon, is intended to provide shoppers with a sense of the projected reliability of new models. The Chevrolet Cruze, equipped with either the 1.4-liter or 1.8-liter engine, received the worst rating of any small car in the survey
 

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the 2013 Fusion continues with the same transmission it currently has due to the power take off for the optional AWD and the higher torque engines it will have. The 2013 Fusion also has a brand new CVT transmission for the highest MPG models since those seem to work best with hybrids.

The DCT250 is meant for B and C class cars, Fiesta and Focus, not for the Fusion sized vehicle. The DCT 250 may eventually have AWD added to it, but I doubt anytime soon

As for the Cruze, why does its traditional transmission has so many problems? I don't know, I guess it just shows that even something routine and traditional can still have problems.

Oct 2011, The Consumer Reports Annual Auto Reliability Survey, released on Tuesday afternoon, is intended to provide shoppers with a sense of the projected reliability of new models. The Chevrolet Cruze, equipped with either the 1.4-liter or 1.8-liter engine, received the worst rating of any small car in the survey
No argument, but the Fusion could use the wet clutch DCT, which is suitable for larger vehicles, if the mpg benefit was compelling.

The Cruze had its share of first year problems; those related to the transmission seem to be software-related. Sound familiar? We shouldn't gloat about the Cruze's reliability rating, though - one can only imagine how the first year Focus will do in the same survey.

Shouldn't be too down on the Focus DCT- mine works. Well, unless it's cold (harsh/sudden gear changes) or I am foolish enough to drive it in big city traffic (clutch chatter). It just happens to be the worst tranmission I've had.
 

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No argument, but the Fusion could use the wet clutch DCT, which is suitable for larger vehicles, if the mpg benefit was compelling.

The Cruze had its share of first year problems; those related to the transmission seem to be software-related. Sound familiar? We shouldn't gloat about the Cruze's reliability rating, though - one can only imagine how the first year Focus will do in the same survey.
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since the Fusion has available AWD, and since the EB2.0/tranny combo are already used in the Edge and Explorer it probably makes sense to use the same carry over transmission until the 7DCT480 is available. Maybe the Mondeo will launch with the 7DCT480 since the Mondeo is launching later than the Fusion.

The Focus was included in the same survey, the Cruze happened to be rated the lowest. Its a little suprising because its been around since 2009 and the transmission has been around since 2008. I guess it just shows that even a traditional transmission can have a lot of problems, even when its been out for 4 years.
 
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