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What We Know, 
What Ford Does Not Want You to Know,
& Who Is To Blame

new 9/19/02
updated 9/23/02


This July (2002) we learned of a RHD 96 SHO that was a factory program car. It was an early production number shipped to Japan then imported to UK. Point is it was a early 96 with FACTORY welded cams. See http://www.v8sho.com/SHO/96RHDSHOwithFactoryWeldedCams.htm

This week I spoke to someone who told me Ford had enough field reports to identify the beginning of a cam sprocket epidemic by 1997.

The 4.6L SOHC shares the same sprocket design and has similar but fewer failures with a much lower red line. That is NOT a Yamaha hybrid so all the blame, 100 % goes to FOMOCO. Yamaha is hereby absolved of any blame (legal or moral) for the faulty Ford design.

So if Ford knew they had a problem as early as 1996 they were unwilling to make the engines right, maybe the engines were already made? Who knows, but they knew they were selling defective product to every 97, 98 and 99 V8 SHO owner.

Six months ago V8 SHO owners with out-of-warranty cam failure typically had Ford pay half the total bill. Recently we had an owner with an in-warranty failure pay $1,000 out of pocket because a $13,000 new engine costs $1,000 more than the blue book value of his car. Evidently as we get better organized Ford takes a harder stance. See http://v8sho.com/SHO/RonaldTurnerCamFailure.htm

One last interesting item, you may know Ford keeps maintenance and repair records on your car, available at every dealership called an Oasis report. Somehow it seems Ford uses the same system to rate customer "loyalty and attitude". If for example, one might tell the service writer it is not your fault that the cam fell apart and it may be reflected in your permanent record. See http://v8sho.com/SHO/IsWeBadFurdOwners.htm

The V8SHO did not die because of bad marketing or changing consumer taste. Ford knew they were stuck with 20,000 defective engines, so their plan was to use the engines anyway, price the car out of sight to get maximum profit per unit, invest nothing in marketing and deny they whole damn thing for as long as possible. I guess that is how you optimize cash flow with a defective product.

Add insult to injury Ford calls this treatment "Nurturing", with no motor I call it "Neutering"

The creation of Ford Performance Group reaffirms the companyís commitment to generating product passion, driving showroom traffic and boosting customer satisfaction by... Nurturing already powerful relationships with enthusiast customers in Ford car clubs

see http://v8sho.com/SHO/FordNurturesUs.htm 

That is they way I see it, see it differently send me a note and I will post it here.

Timothy Wright
Webmaster@v8sho.com


I was talking with a 40+ year ford owner (nothing but Fords for forty plus years) about getting my cams fixed, and he interrupted me by saying, "But Ford is standing behind it and fixing it, right???"

After I told him Ford knew about the problem, investigated the fixes, and now denies all knowledge of the problem, he got a look on his face like he had just drunk from a really bad cup of coffee and said, "That sounds more like Chevy than Ford."

If Ford is going to treat us like this, we need to give them the "Word of Mouth" advertising that they have earned.

I think that the fact that Ford has earned the comments was well established in the article.

It can be difficult to voice distaste, without appearing distasteful oneself.

Best Regards,
Doug


So in English that article is saying that ford bought 20,000 engines from Yamaha knew they were bad during testing. Still put them in the cars never told no one. Acted like a 5 year old that broke his moms lamp playing baseball in the living room and hid the evidence. And this is there was exactly 20,000 v8sho's made.

Russell Patterson
99


We think about 19,730 V8SHOs were made in Atlanta. I doubt Ford ordered exactly that many engines from Yamaha, we know they did not because until recently Ford had new motors for warranty replacement. I am guessing about 20,000 engines were made. - Buford


I disagree on a couple of points here, and will add on to the original point with why.

<Ford knew they were stuck with 20,000 defective engines, so their plan was to use the engines anyway, price the car out of sight to get maximum profit per unit, invest nothing in marketing and deny they whole damn thing for as long as possible.>

Nice theory, but I chalk it up to organizational largess, incompetence, and lack of focus. The SHO was nothing but a blip on the radar screen with Ford, they have had and will continue to have bigger problems both in PR and $$. The fact that a few people who are ardent enthusiasts are complaining probably means nothing to Ford as a whole. This problem is probably sporadically reported to people that matter, dismissed out of hand as a minor annoyance, let's get to what our current focus is...

<This week I spoke to someone who told me Ford had enough field reports to identify the beginning of a cam sprocket epidemic by 1997.>

Who was it, and in what position? How did you find this out? Did this person blurt it out or respond to leading questions? Don't underestimate the ability for people to please you with 'yes sirs' etc... to soften a situation.

<I am not going to give away a source when he asked me not to quote him, I judge it credible. - Buford>

<The creation of Ford Performance Group reaffirms the companyís commitment to generating product passion, driving showroom traffic and boosting customer satisfaction by... Nurturing already powerful relationships with enthusiast customers in Ford car clubs>

Marketing, pure marketing. Do you really think the right had knows what the left hand is doing at Ford? I hate to be a devils advocate, but I don't see a big conspiracy here. To boil it down, I only see incompetence and I don't find that surprising. True, I never had to deal with the cost of a failed cam sprocket but I had an almost worse, almost as expensive problem with my '91 with the subframe problem that Ford would never reimburse me for, since it happened before the recall. If you own a high performance car, you MUST accept some financial risk.

My 2 cents, flame suit on. For the newbies, I've been here a while, mainly lurking since I'm SHOless right now.

David


Doug,

Well put!

Tim's article voices the general feeling that a lot of SHO V8 owners have about this entire episode. I still can't get over how Bill Ford puts out those syrupy ads about love for the car/Mustang and FORD OWNERS and loyalty etc. and then the company won't stand behind one of their premier cars when something that is so obviously their fault happens.

This SHOULD be a huge PR problem for Ford. If we had bought Mustangs with the same problem, we would all be getting new cams now, you can bet on that.

Don Mallinson


I just read Timís article on the web site. Iím wondering if anybody knows of other SHOís with welded cams that came from Ford? I, as of yet, have not welded my cams being I have the premo Ford ESP for another 9,000 miles. I do know the history of my car which is part of the reason for my interest. Iím the second owner of my SHO purchasing it with 28,128 miles. The previous owner was Ford with the car being registered out of Allen Park, MI and used by a Ford Exec.

With just over 66,000 miles I have had no problem with my cams as of yet. I will be getting them welded sometime next summer (no miles during the winter months being the car goes into storage) as it approaches the 75,000 mile mark.

This leads to two things. I like Paul N.ís idea of putting together a list of places that can/have welded our cams. Living in Minnesota I REALLY donít care to drive, or ship the SHO, to Atlanta. Secondly, when I do have my cams done I guess I will find out if Ford welded my cams as well!

<see http://www.v8sho.com/SHO/FolksWhoWillWeldYourCams.htm > - Buford

Has anybody heard if Courtneyís in the western Minneapolis burbs, or the SHO place out of Madison, WI if they have welded any v8sho cams???

Paul M.
Ď98 TR


I'm the lone voice in the UK over this, but I have convinced two other potential ford customers to look elsewhere. I've only just turned 30 but have had 5 fords. The SHO WILL be the last I ever buy.

Hopefully I will get the CAMs sorted soon. Going to a shop on Monday.

Rav
98 SHO in the UK.


I think that everyone here believes that Ford (including many fine individuals at Ford) have done a fine job in many areas on the car.

Let me make an analogy, though.

Let's say you went to a restaurant and had the most wonderful experience every step of the way. Many people had done their jobs very well with a lot of professionalism.

Somehow the luster might be lost, if you found out the reason you were in the hospital with food poisoning was that they had washed the lettuce for your salad in the toilet.

And if you had a reason to believe they knew it???

I am quite certain that many dedicated individuals did a fine job in the design of the SHO. Allowing a sprocket on the camshaft to be used in manner inconsistent with its design was not an example of that, and unfortunately tarnishes the respectable efforts by everyone else.

Best Regards,
Doug


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