Mulally facing pressure to fix Ford tech and quality glitches

Ford has had its share of quality issues with its fledgling MyFord Touch technology, and watchdogs like Consumer Reports and J.D. Power have taken notice. Bloomberg reports that Ford CEO Alan Mulally is all too aware of the automaker's latest technology glitches, saying, "We've had just a few issues with some technologies associated with Sync and MyFord Touch."

The "just a few issues" Mulally is referring to include reports of touchscreens blacking out, general complaints about a steep learning curve and a recent crossover ranking by Consumer Reports that placed the 2011 Explorer 17th out of 19 vehicles tested due in large part to the tech. CR also dropped the coveted "Recommended" nod for the 2011 Edge because of MyFord Touch.

Mulally's recent statements come just before the release of J.D. Power's June 23 new car quality report. J.D. Power's VP Dave Sargent claims the automaker's own data shows that quality has taken a hit, adding that Ford is "making an early warning to the market that this may be a problem." There is no telling how car buyers would react to Ford slipping a bit in the rankings, but the company's stellar performance in the study over the past few years has likely been a major reason why the Blue Oval managed to re-pass Toyota on the sales charts.

Ford isn't taking the potential quality issues lightly, recently spending $100 million to deploy laser-guided robots in 17 factories to help reduce wind noise in its automobiles. The robots will enable Ford to install doors to within one tenth of one millimeter of specification. The automaker is also working hard to stay on top of quality even as it continues the torrid pace of new vehicle launches.

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