The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of MI, also named German auto supplier Robert Bosch GmbH as a defendant.
The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of MI in Detroit by law firm Hagens Berman.
Last year, Bosch agreed to pay $327.5 million to USA owners of Volkswagen AG vehicles for its part in installing illegal emissions-cheating software. The accusations against Ford follow in the wake of similar complaints made against Volkswagen, Mitsubishi, Renault, Nissan, Fiat and others that have been accused of misleading consumers in regards to emissions test results for their vehicles.
There's another company mentioned in the lawsuit accusing Ford of cheating emissions standards.
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"The vehicle's own on-board diagnostic software indicates emission control system to be operating as Ford intended, even though its real world performance grossly exceeds the standard", attorney Steve Berman of Hagens Berman said in the complaint.
Erik Gordon, a specialist in entrepreneurship and technology at the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, stated that if real, the "allegations would expose Ford to the threat of billion-dollar liabilities and punch a hole in its efforts to place itself as an automobile technology leader".
According to a Bloomberg report, a Ford spokesperson said in a written statement, "All Ford vehicles, including those with diesel engines, comply with all U.S. EPA and CARB emissions regulations". "We will safeguard ourselves against these baseless claims".
"Bosch takes the allegations of manipulation of the diesel software very seriously. Bosch is cooperating with the continuing investigations in various jurisdictions, and is defending its interests in the litigation", according to a statement from company spokeswoman Alissa Cleland.
Bosch noted the "sensitive legal nature of these matters" in its response to a request for comment. The full report is available here.