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Ford-Firestone suits consolidated

INDIANAPOLIS - Ford Motor Co. and Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. may be facing another huge payout related to faulty tires installed mostly on Ford Explorers.

U.S. District Court Judge Sara Evans Barker on Wednesday, Nov. 28, granted class-action status to the hundreds of consumers who are suing Ford and Firestone in noninjury cases.

The class action includes plaintiffs suing because the resale value of their vehicles plunged, those seeking money to pay for replacement tires not covered by recalls and suits from consumers asking to be reimbursed for rental cars they paid for while waiting for new tires.

The class action, which includes about 500 cases, could balloon to include millions of current and former Explorer owners if the ruling stands.

Ford plans to appeal.

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