Ford Kuga owners are being told that their vehicles are “worthless” and have been turned away from dealerships when trying to trade in their cars.
According to a report by the Sunday Times, several Kuga owners have attempted to trade their cars in for other Ford models – only to be sent away by dealerships.
Those who have been accommodated were given trade-in values far below what they believe their vehicles are worth, stated the report.
East London Kuga owner Praneet Khandoo told the Sunday Times that he attempted to trade in his car at Eastern Cape Motors, only to be told “he would get nothing for it”.
Khandoo’s Kuga had its cooling system replaced in October, well before Ford South Africa issued a safety recall for 1.6-litre models due to engine overheating which could lead to fires.
“The salesman said he was told they could offer me nothing for the car. He doubted there was another dealer who could give me a quote either,” said Khandoo.
A sales representative at Ford Eagle in Johannesburg said they would take a Ford Kuga on trade-in, but advised owners to wait “until the media storm had passed”.
“It’s just not worth it. The Kuga has been killed. Every day its price continues to drop through the floor,” said the agent.
A Ford Silver Lakes salesperson said they were not taking chances on the Kuga, and AutoBid suggested they offer R70,000 for a bottom-end 1.6-litre Kuga.
Hatfield VW Braamfontein said auctioneers AutoBid valued a 2014 1.6-litre EcoBoost Kuga Titanium AWD at R129,000 – “R167,000 less than what an essentially good car is actually worth”.
An AutoBid pricing agent told the Sunday Times that they had priced all Kugas at 50% of what they were worth.
“People are terrified of these cars,” said the agent.
Three other dealerships contacted said they would not give quotes for the Kuga over the phone.
Ford South Africa recently issued a safety recall for the 1.6-litre EcoBoost Kuga, due to overheating issues.
Overheating can lead to a cracking of the cylinder head, which causes an oil leak, which can lead to an engine fire.
4,556 local models were affected by the recall, with over 50 cases of Ford Kuga’s catching fire reported in South Africa since December 2015.
The full report is in the Sunday Times of 22 January 2016.