Mustang MT82 Transmission Woes Lead To New Class Action Lawsuit

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Mustang owners’ qualms with Ford’s MT82 six-speed manual transmission are well-documented across the web. For what could possibly be cost reasons, Ford ditched the beloved Tremec T5 and TR-3650 manuals in the base Ford Mustang and Mustang GT for the Getrag Ford MT82 in the 2011 model year, and many owners have complained about problems ever since – everything from third gear lockouts to broken shift forks. So it’s not really a surprise that a class action lawsuit has arisen in association with the Getrag Ford MT82.

Gregorio, et al., v. Ford Motor Company was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, and it addresses a number of complaints that have persisted for a decade now.

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Those complaints include claims that inherent defects cause the Ford MT82 transmission to slip, jerk, engage harshly, clash gears, suffer premature wear, and eventually fail. Plaintiffs claim this has led to the replacement of shift forks, shift shafts, synchronizers, and clutch assemblies, or even the entire transmission, only for them to experience the same problems all over again.

The lawsuit alleges that Ford has known about these transmission issues in association with the Mustang since 2010, since the automaker has issued a number of technical service bulletins and special service messages related to the MT82 or MT82-D4.

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In those documents, Ford has instructed its dealer technicians to drain and refill the transmissions, replace the third and fourth gear shift forks, the countershaft third gears, and the third and fourth gear synchronizer hubs and sleeves. Technicians have also been told to replace the gearshift levers, the clutch pedal position switches, brackets, the main shaft second gears, and the first and second gear synchronizer hubs and sleeves.

The Ford MT82 lawsuit also points to a 2011 investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) concerning 2011-2012 Mustang manual transmission problems. At that time, the NHTSA found 364 complaints related to the transmission, especially in cold temperatures. Ford reportedly took action to correct these problems, and the NHTSA closed its case after finding that there was no substantial safety risk associated with the complaints.

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For its part, Ford denies that there are any defects in the MT82, and states that these problems are caused by the normal wear and tear to which a manual transmission is subjected.

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Written by Brett Foote

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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24 Comments

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  1. So far…so good for my experience. I do have to qualify this though by our 2017 GT is a seasonal use only vehicle living here in the northern US…I didn’t feel like changing out wheels and tire for the winter and have other vehicles to run in the cold and slop.

    I will say though, that until the transmission fluid gets up to temperature, shifting is a bit clunky and higher effort regardless of how far one disengages the clutch. Compared to my front drive 2016 Focus ST which also has a Getrag model six speed and shifts like silk no matter the temperature…the MT82 does leave a bit to be desired…

  2. I brought a brand new 2018 mustang GT manual and I have had three transmission. They replaced the first after 5000 miles and the second another 1500 miles. My fifth gear went out in both transmission and the second replacement also was heating along with the fifth gear

  3. Manual transmissions: archaic pieces of machinery that should be filed away with the bumper jack, distributors and diesel engines. 10-speed autos and DCTs are much better. I know the purists will balk but the rest of the enthusiasts who want a car that’s fun without headaches will agree. CD6/S650 mustang should not have a manual

    • ouch. do you actually believe that?? evidently you don’t like old muscle cars for a reason unknown to me… i feel bad for you.

      • quite contrary, I LOVE old muscle cars, they make the world a better place because without them, the cars we have today would not exist. And yes, I believe in car’s like those, a manual transmission is absolutely necessary because it is part of the character of those vehicles. I’ve owned a few manual transmission sports cars (mustang included) and honestly those vehicles would not have been the same without being able to row the gears myself. However, these new performance vehicles are nothing like the cars of old. These new gas powered mustangs are nothing like the classic mustangs of old, or even a car as recent as the legendary Terminator Cobra, a car that’s almost 20 years old. And in response to Running with Scissors (hopefully, a nod to Weird Al’s album of the same name, if so, thumbs up!!), you are correct that in about 20 years, ICE engines will be but a memory, and more than likely, us car enthusiasts will be shortly behind the automotive loves of our lives or retired in rocking chairs too old to really enjoy the cars we hold so high. I understand your thinking when it comes to the full experience of a performance car, but manual transmissions, in this day and age, honestly limit the performance of the car even if they add to the thrill. There are few things as fun as downshifting from fifth to third and feeling the thrust of acceleration form a V8 under the hood, tires spinning and experiencing all of the joy that it brings, but from the standpoint of performance, there are very few people, if any, that can out shift a modern automatic or DCT. I agree the Tremec units are better transmissions than the MT82 and I’ve driven mustangs with both. I still favor loud, obnoxious performance cars to Electric but the truth is, while manuals will always hold a place in the hearts of enthusiasts (kind of like pushrod V8 big blocks) the truth is, manual transmissions take a huge back seat to modern Automatics and DCT and are not very profitable. Even if they stay around, they will probably see limited production if companies want to have something “appropriate for their financial bottom line”. Yes, they have their place in old muscle cars and for the percentage car guys who don’t care about overall performance and just want a fun, but slower car.

    • You’re wrong on all points. The only issue with at hand here is Ford’s decision to put the cheap, poor performing, unreliable MT-82 behind the Coyote engine instead of the more suitable and stout TR6060 transmission with the singular goal of keeping the Mustang GT MSRP below that of the Challange R/T and Camaro SS. If they had deployed the TR6060, there would be no lawsuit.

      Your claim that the manual transmission should go by the way of the do-do bird is short-sighted. In another 10-15 years, the ICE engine will become as rare as the manual transmission is now and with it’s eventual demise, automatic transmissions, DCT’s, and every other shiftable transmission will disappear to be replaced with EV cars equipped with CVT transmissions There is absolutely no need for a shiftable car when the EV provides a completely flat torque curve. By the time we reach 2030, there’s a great likelihood that the Mustang Mach-E will be a more important vehicle in the Ford lineup than the traditional Mustang ICE car.

      But the fact is we’re in 2020 and EV’s have not yet replaced traditional ICE cars in the sports and performance segments. There are still too many of us left who appreciate loud, obnoxious, high horsepower cars and insist on the the immersive experience of manually shifting their vehicles.

      If you’re thinking demand for manual transmissions in high performance cars has ceased, you’re wrong. The Porsche 991 GT2 and GT3 were originally offered as PDK only vehicles. Porsche was bombarded with requests for manual transmissions to be offered with these cars and they listened, adding the 6 speed manuals as no cost options in 2017. They understand there are car enthusiasts who prefer manuals while others prefer automatics and they’re willing to satisfy both camps.

      So rather than having you decide what the world needs, let’s leave it up to the individual car manufacturers decide to what is appropriate for their financial bottomline.

  4. This is the Worst Transmission in FORD and Mustang History hands down. I had a 2012 Mustang RTR now a 2013 Mustang BOSS having the same problem all over again. FOOD should be Ashamed of the MT82 and Replace all of them ASAP. The BOSS being a Limited Edition it should have gotten the Shelby GT500 tranny like the 03-04 Mach 1 got the Cobra engine. The Coyote and RoadRunner engines are great the MT82 Simply Suck Trash

  5. I was under the impression the the mt82 received a slight refresh for 2018+, where some things were tweaked or modified. I most definitely have not experienced the lockouts on my mid 2018, and I feel like shifter feels nice and solid (not like some youtube videos I’ve seen explaining some of the problems).

    Some of the people that I’ve seen on youtube who’ve had problems, you go back and look at their previous videos and stuff… and its pretty evident that the transmission has been abused… or been driven hard by someone who doesn’t know how to handle a manual transmission well (not just spirited driving, but huge clutch dumps, or using all their strength to slam from gear to gear).

    My car has relatively low miles on it, but hoping this problem doesn’t rear its ugly head.

    • Yes, same here. Purchased a 2018 MT82 in Sept. 2018 and no issues what so ever. I think you’re correct about a lot of YouTubers abusing their cars. Maybe the later 2018 MT’s were built better too? I typically don’t drive my car hard or abuse it, but I do pulls to redline periodically with no issues. My car has only 10k miles so hoping no future issues.

  6. Yes, the getrag is definitely the weak point in my Mustang GT. I will not buy with that transmission again!

  7. FORD and the Supplier should refund everyone for this transmission. No one spends $40K-$50K for a Mustang to be replacing or repairing a transmission. I will NOT buy another Mustang with this transmission in it. So much for Branding the Mustang as it’s on….

  8. The mt-82 is rated well below the stock gt mustang’s torque output. It may be a great transmission when matched with an engine that puts out power it’s rated to handle. This problem lays solely on Ford’s shoulders unfortunately. You would’ve thought they had learned their lesson with the international built 6.0 diesel which put out over a hundred horsepower less in international trim. Then ford overturned it and guess what? They broke left and right resulting in a huge lawsuit between ford and international. The coyote would be solid with the older T-56 or the updated tr6060 which are built to handle the power.

  9. The mt82 has been improved over time(its a lot better then it was first released) and in 2018 it did get tweaked and modifed the internals where strenghted and the gear shifter feel is greatly improved.
    I have watched the you tube videos and the abuse people give the gearbox is ridiculous harsh and they are the same people that are complaining there transmition is now broken!.
    Yes its not perfect when cold its notchy and does require a bit of effort to select gear when cold.
    A lot of these lawsuits will be from people that have simply abused the gearbox or thinking they can do super quick gear changes.

  10. These have been a problem for a while they should have learned there lesson from the 90’s when they used Gertrag in F series truck’s. I also believe there needs to be a class action suit on Ecoboost V6 oil pan and timing cover oil leaks it a major problem

  11. It’s interesting after reading all of the commentary above. We own four cars, and three are manual transmissions by choice. The main reasons were initially the mastery of a new skill, followed by a greater connection with the machine itself, enhancing the overall driving experience.

    A third benefit…which I still believe to be true if engineered properly and specified properly to match the rest of the drive-train, should be less maintenance, and also trouble over time due to it’s relative simplicity when compared to those fussy automatics, with all their fluid pressure valves, shifting bands and myriad of electronic sensor controls. Automatics always seemed heavier also and more of a challenge to keep cool due to their larger mass.

    I had also read that the MT 82 was under speced for the Coyote as early as it’s Gen 1 iteration. I’ve wondered also, as mentioned above, if the decision to use it, was a cost containment issue. If this was the primary reason, then shame on Ford. If the spec was marginal to start with, then it certainly should have been anticipated that with the spirited driving one should expect, this would considerably compromise it’s durability.

  12. Maybe this is a silly question but as this is a class action, can parties still join? If so, how? I had mine in because of the clunking while it was still in warranty. Dealer basically told me that it was “normal for this transmission”. Not that that’s a good thing, but they wouldn’t go any further with it. Now I’m concerned it’s a headache waiting to happen.

  13. Yes, same here. Purchased a 2018 MT82 in Sept. 2018 and no issues what so ever. I think you’re correct about a lot of YouTubers abusing their cars. Maybe the later 2018 MT’s were built better too? I typically don’t drive my car hard or abuse it, but I do pulls to redline periodically with no issues. My car has only 10k miles so hoping no future issues.

  14. I am a member of the senior ranks who has loved and coveted performance cars since obtaining my license in 1966!! My 2017 Mustang GT Performance Package has been a real disappointment from day one with reference to the transmission issue.
    The other listed difficulties in this forum have not been the problem. What I have experienced is a persistent “CLUNK” or “BANG” whether shifting into first or rowing through the gears.
    I have had it back to Ford numerous times during the warranty period (with copious documentation) and have had the same tired old response of this is normal. I have driven several 16s, 17s, and 18s at the dealership with the same result. Hence with smiles they can say it’s normal.
    Well after fifty five years of manual shift driving all makes of high performance cars, I can definitively say it’s NOT normal. I have thought of TRADING it in for a later automatic GT or other makes entirely because there is no way a private buyer would ever buy this vehicle with that clunking during all shifting. I would not buy this vehicle after test driving it!!!!!!!!
    Had I been smart enough to test drive it after delivery BEFORE taking it off the lot, I would have walked away from this vehicle.
    It’s to the point that I can’t stand driving it any more.
    Hope we win this suit and Ford is forced to install the good old TREMEC in every one.

  15. So Brett…any updates on where this case stands? I haven’t been able to find any recent updates anywhere…

      • Brett, as mentioned above, should anyone concerned about potentially being a participant be positioning themselves to do anything at this point to join the suite, or just hang tight for further updates?

        • I’m definitely not qualified to give legal advice, so that’s really up to each individual. I doubt that I will bother with it personally, however, because it really isn’t any issue in my car.

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