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My name is Mike Stimson, and I just bought a cam failed 96 SHO. The car has just over 127,000 miles and I bought it from the original owner with tons of service records (the car was very well cared for). The story he told me made me so angry and frustrated at Ford, I wanted to walk into the service department and do something I am sure I would have regretted later.
The owner of this 96 SHO heard some engine noise and noticed the car was running a bit rough. He took it to Vancouver Ford in Vancouver, WA and told them of the symptoms. Keep in mind this is a well cared for car with lots of service records. He heard a noise and took it to the dealer for service immediately (on last Thursday). Vancouver Ford listened to the car and told him it was not a big problem and that they could not work on the car until the following Monday. In the meantime Vancouver Ford told the owner to take his car (they did not tell him anything about the possibility of an imminent cam failure). The next day on Friday, while the owner was on the freeway, black smoke and lots of noise came out of the engine. He had it towed back to the same Vancouver Ford, where they diagnosed no compression in 4 cylinders. They still did not say a word about cam failure, just a mysterious loss of compression on one side of the motor. They quoted the owner a repair estimate of $16,000 and they even kept a straight face when they did it.
I never have had much respect for Vancouver Ford, but I think this verges on negligence or even fraud. The owner came in when the car could have been saved, but they basically claim to know nothing about cam failures in V8 SHOs so they did not recognize the obvious. Yeah right.
I bought the car knowing it has a cam failure. I have located a good used running motor with 57,000 miles on it that needs the cams welded. I might put that motor in it, or wait to see what comes of the class action suit. Unfortunately, the car is more valuable right now being parted out for its excellent condition interior, wheels, and body, than it would be if I put the car back into running condition.
Thanks for all you are doing. If Henry Ford could see his car company now....
Owner and mechanic of many Gen 1 and Gen 2 V6 SHOs (and all the obsolete parts Ford does not support)