An airbag explodes in a car

52 Million Airbag Inflators Should Be Recalled: A Guide for Car Owners

In recent years, the automotive industry has witnessed growing concerns about safety-related defects in airbag inflators. The NHTSA’s recent Initial Decision sheds light on a critical issue affecting vehicle manufacturers and consumers alike. Let’s delve into the details:

The Problem

The NHTSA identified a defect in certain frontal and passenger airbag inflators produced by ARC and Delphi. These inflators pose a risk to vehicle occupants, potentially compromising their safety during collisions. As a result, the agency recommends a recall for affected vehicles.

According to the NHTSA, these inflators can rupture during deployment, sending metal fragments flying into the passenger compartment. This can cause serious injuries or even death to the driver or passengers. The defect is similar to the one that plagued Takata airbags, which led to the largest recall in U.S. history.

The NHTSA estimates that about 52 million airbag inflators from ARC and Delphi are defective and should be recalled. These inflators have been used in vehicles from 2000 through early 2018 produced by 12 automakers, including General Motors (GM), Ford Motor, Stellantis, Tesla, Toyota Motor, and Volkswagen.

The defect is caused by the degradation of the propellant used to inflate the airbags, which can become unstable over time due to exposure to heat, humidity, and moisture. This can lead to excessive internal pressure and rupture of the inflator housing.

The NHTSA has been investigating the issue since 2015, when it received reports of two deaths and four injuries involving ARC inflators. The agency also received information from Delphi, which supplied some of the inflators to ARC, indicating potential safety risks. The NHTSA conducted extensive testing and analysis of the inflators and concluded that they contain a defect related to motor vehicle safety.

A Tesla steering wheel with an airbag inscription on it

A Tesla steering wheel with an airbag inscription on it

Car Makes and Models Affected

While the investigation primarily focuses on specific airbag inflators, it indirectly impacts various car makes and models. Owners of vehicles equipped with these inflators should pay attention to recall notices from manufacturers. The following is a list of the affected car makes and models, based on the NHTSA’s Initial Decision:

  • BMW: 1 Series, 3 Series, 5 Series, 6 Series, 7 Series, X1, X3, X5, X6, Z4
  • Ford: Edge, Escape, Expedition, Explorer, F-150, F-250, F-350, F-450, F-550, Fiesta, Flex, Focus, Fusion, Mustang, Ranger, Taurus, Transit Connect
  • GM:
    • Buick Enclave, Encore, LaCrosse, Lucerne, Regal, Verano;
    • Cadillac ATS, CTS, DTS, Escalade, SRX, STS, XTS;
    • Chevrolet Avalanche, Camaro, Cobalt, Colorado, Cruze, Equinox, Express, HHR, Impala, Malibu, Silverado, Sonic, Suburban, Tahoe, Traverse, Volt;
    • GMC Acadia, Canyon, Savana, Sierra, Terrain, Yukon;
    • Hummer H2, H3;
    • Pontiac G5, G6, Solstice;
    • Saturn Aura, Outlook, Sky;
    • Saab 9-3, 9-5, 9-7X
  • Hyundai: Accent, Azera, Elantra, Genesis, Santa Fe, Sonata, Tucson, Veloster
  • Kia: Forte, Optima, Rio, Sedona, Sorento, Soul, Sportage
  • Maserati: Ghibli, GranTurismo, Levante, Quattroporte
  • Mercedes-Benz: C-Class, CL-Class, CLK-Class, CLS-Class, E-Class, GL-Class, GLK-Class, ML-Class, R-Class, S-Class, SL-Class, SLK-Class, SLS-Class, Sprinter
  • Porsche: 911, Boxster, Cayenne, Cayman, Macan, Panamera
  • Stellantis:
    • Chrysler 200, 300, Aspen, Pacifica, PT Cruiser, Sebring, Town & Country;
    • Dodge Avenger, Caliber, Challenger, Charger, Dakota, Durango, Grand Caravan, Journey, Magnum, Nitro, Ram 1500, Ram 2500, Ram 3500, Ram 4500, Ram 5500;
    • Fiat 500, 500L;
    • Jeep Compass, Grand Cherokee, Liberty, Patriot, Wrangler;
    • Ram C/V, ProMaster, ProMaster City
  • Tesla: Model S, Model X
  • Toyota: 4Runner, Avalon, Camry, Corolla, FJ Cruiser, Highlander, Land Cruiser, Matrix, Prius, RAV4, Sequoia, Sienna, Tacoma, Tundra, Venza, Yaris
  • Volkswagen: Beetle, CC, Eos, Golf, GTI, Jetta, Passat, Rabbit, Tiguan, Touareg
VW steering wheel with airbag inscription

VW steering wheel with airbag inscription

Protect Yourself and Your Rights

If you own one of these vehicles, you need to take action to protect yourself and your rights. Here’s what you can do:

  • Check your vehicle identification number (VIN) on the NHTSA website to see if your vehicle is part of the recall. If it is, follow the instructions to get your airbag inflators replaced as soon as possible.
  • Keep track of any problems or incidents related to your airbags. Document the date, time, location, and details of what happened. Take photos and videos if possible. Save any receipts, invoices, or repair orders.
  • Contact a qualified attorney who can help you with your legal options. Owners with substantial and recurring problems may be entitled to a refund or replacement under lemon law. Other owners may have claims for breach of warranty under the Magnuson-Moss Act.
The "airbag" sign on the car's torpedo

The “airbag” sign on the car’s torpedo

Possible Class Actions

Given the severity of the airbag inflator issue, affected consumers may seek legal recourse through class-action lawsuits. These actions could involve:

  • Compensation Claims: Owners of vehicles equipped with the identified inflators may pursue compensation for potential safety risks and inconvenience.
  • Consumer Advocacy: Consumer advocacy groups and legal firms may organize class actions to hold manufacturers accountable and ensure consumer rights are protected.
  • Recall Compliance: Class actions can also pressure manufacturers to promptly address recalls and provide necessary repairs or replacements.

Conclusion

Don’t let faulty airbags put your life at risk. You deserve to drive a safe and reliable vehicle. If you have been affected by the airbag inflator defect, you may be eligible for compensation and justice.

Call our law firm today at (973) 598-1980 for a free consultation. We have the experience and expertise to handle your case and fight for your rights. Don’t wait, call us now!

 


Sources:


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Distressed Car Owner Facing Vehicle Issues

The Most Unreliable 2018-2023 Cars According To Number of Owner Complaints on NHTSA

Are you driving one of the most complained-about cars on the road? We’ve compiled a list of vehicles causing the most headaches for their owners based on NHTSA data. If your car is on this list, you’re not alone in facing issues. More importantly, you may be entitled to compensation.

The Troubled Roster

Here’s a detailed list of the most complained-about cars from 2018 to 2023, based on our data collected from the NHTSA website:

Problem Vehicle Number of Complaints on NHTSA
2020 KIA SOUL 205
2019 DODGE GRAND CARAVAN 114
2018 CHRYSLER 300 114
2018 TOYOTA C-HR 104
2019 KIA FORTE 96
2022 CHEVROLET SILVERADO 1500 94
2023 JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE 90
2023 NISSAN ROGUE 80
2020 FORD FUSION 72
2021 NISSAN SENTRA 67
2020 FORD EDGE 63
2023 JEEP WRANGLER 62
2022 SUBARU FORESTER 60
2023 FORD F-150 59
2019 DODGE CHARGER 59
2020 LINCOLN AVIATOR 55
2022 GMC SIERRA 1500 53
2019 TOYOTA 4RUNNER 48
2019 LEXUS RX350 48
2021 AUDI Q5 38

Your Road to Compensation

Owning a problematic car can be frustrating, but you have rights. If you’re experiencing issues with your vehicle, you might be entitled to compensation. Our team at the Law Office of Howard A. Gutman specializes in advocating for consumers facing problems with their cars.

Why Choose Us?

  1. Proven Success: We have a track record of securing compensation for car owners.
  2. Free Consultation: Get a detailed understanding of your case without any financial commitment.
  3. No Upfront Costs: Car manufacturers and dealers are obligated to cover all legal expenses.

Act Now, Drive with Confidence

Don’t let car troubles disrupt your life. If your vehicle is on this list, it’s time to take action. Call us for a free consultation, and let us navigate the legal complexities while you focus on getting back on the road stress-free.

Remember, your journey to compensation begins with a simple call. Drive your case, not your worries. Contact the Law Office of Howard A. Gutman at (973) 598-1980 today.

 

Ley de Protección al Consumidor en Caso de Vehículos Defectuosos (Ley del Limón)

La Ley de Protección al Consumidor en Caso de Vehículos Defectuosos, comúnmente conocida como “Ley del Limón”, es una legislación importante que defiende los derechos de los consumidores en casos de vehículos automotores defectuosos. Esta ley tiene como objetivo garantizar que los compradores de vehículos nuevos y usados estén protegidos en caso de que adquieran un automóvil que tenga repetidos problemas o defectos de fábrica.

¿Qué es la Ley del Limón?

La Ley del Limón establece que si un vehículo nuevo o usado presenta defectos sustanciales durante un período determinado, generalmente dentro de la garantía del fabricante, el consumidor tiene derecho a una reparación gratuita o, en algunos casos, a un reemplazo del vehículo. Los defectos cubiertos por esta ley suelen afectar la seguridad, el uso o el valor del vehículo.

¿Quién está protegido por la Ley del Limón?

Los derechos otorgados por la Ley del Limón varían de un estado a otro, pero generalmente se aplican a:

  • Compradores de vehículos nuevos.
  • Compradores de vehículos usados que estén cubiertos por una garantía.
  • Arrendatarios de vehículos nuevos.
  • Personas y empresas que utilicen vehículos para fines comerciales.

Proceso de reclamación

Si un consumidor cree que su vehículo califica bajo la Ley del Limón, generalmente debe seguir estos pasos:

  1. Notificar al fabricante o concesionario acerca de los problemas del vehículo y darles la oportunidad de repararlo.
  2. Mantener registros detallados de las reparaciones y comunicaciones con el fabricante o concesionario.
  3. Si los problemas persisten, consultar con un abogado o la agencia de protección al consumidor de su estado.
  4. En algunos casos, un arbitraje puede ser requerido para resolver la disputa.

Derechos del consumidor

Los consumidores tienen derechos claros bajo la Ley del Limón, y estos pueden incluir:

  • Reparación gratuita o reemplazo del vehículo defectuoso.
  • Reembolso del precio de compra o pago de arrendamiento.
  • Gastos de reparación y otros costos asociados.
  • Honorarios legales y costos relacionados.

Ley del Limón en su estado

Es importante recordar que las leyes del limón varían según el estado en los Estados Unidos, por lo que es fundamental consultar las regulaciones específicas de su ubicación para comprender sus derechos y responsabilidades. Si tiene preguntas o necesita asistencia, comuníquese con un abogado especializado en la Ley del Limón o con la agencia de protección al consumidor de su estado.

La Ley del Limón es una herramienta valiosa que protege a los consumidores contra vehículos defectuosos y garantiza que los fabricantes y concesionarios cumplan con sus obligaciones. Está diseñada para proporcionar tranquilidad a los compradores de automóviles y garantizar que obtengan vehículos de calidad y seguros.

New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law Claims

The New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law, is a law that protects consumers who are victims of deception or purchased used cars with substantial defects.  Below is an overview of the New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law, its key provisions, and what consumers should know if they believe they’ve purchased a defective used car.

Key Provisions of the New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law:

  1. Coverage: The UCLL covers used passenger vehicles purchased in New Jersey from licensed dealers. These vehicles must be seven years old or less and have less than 100,000 miles on the odometer at the time of purchase.
  2. Eligibility: To qualify for protection under the UCLL, a vehicle must meet specific criteria, including a substantial defect that impairs the use, value, or safety of the vehicle. The defect must occur within 24,000 miles or two years from the date of delivery, whichever comes first.
  3. Required Repairs: If a vehicle has a substantial defect within the specified mileage and time frame, the dealer is obligated to make a reasonable number of repair attempts to correct the problem.
  4. Refund or Replacement: If the dealer cannot repair the defect after a reasonable number of attempts, the consumer is entitled to a refund or a replacement vehicle, as per their preference.
  5. Consumer’s Rights: The UCLL grants consumers the right to pursue legal action to enforce their rights. This includes filing a complaint with the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs and potentially taking the dealer to court if necessary.
  6. Out-of-Pocket Costs: The law requires the dealer to reimburse the consumer for any reasonable out-of-pocket expenses directly related to the defect, such as towing, rental cars, and other necessary expenses incurred during repair attempts.
  7. Attorney Fees: If a consumer successfully sues the dealer under the UCLL, the court may award reasonable attorney fees and costs.

Consumer’s Responsibilities:

To benefit from the New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law, consumers should follow these steps:

  1. Keep all repair records, invoices, and correspondence related to the vehicle’s defect.
  2. Document all communication with the dealer, including repair requests and responses.
  3. Report the defect to the dealer within the warranty period and allow them a reasonable number of repair attempts to fix the issue.
  4. If the problem persists and the dealer is unable to repair the defect, notify the dealer in writing, requesting a refund or replacement vehicle.

Enforcement:

If a consumer’s rights under the UCLL are violated, they can file a complaint with the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs. The Division will investigate the complaint and mediate disputes between consumers and dealers. If necessary, consumers can pursue legal action in court to enforce their rights.

It’s important to note that the New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law primarily applies to transactions involving licensed dealers. Private sales, as well as sales from auctions and certain other sales, are not covered.

Before purchasing a used car, consumers are advised to thoroughly research the vehicle’s history, have it inspected by a qualified mechanic, and carefully review the warranty and return policies offered by the dealer.

My transmission on the Honda is giving me problems.

For information on the New Jersey Used Car Lemon Law and to learn more about your rights, contact our office at (973) 598-1980.

A 2023 Nissan Pathfinder cruising on the open road

Is Your 2023 Nissan Pathfinder’s Auto Stop/Start System Driving You Crazy?

Are you one of the proud owners of the 2023 Nissan Pathfinder? You probably fell in love with its sleek design, comfortable interior, and advanced features. However, what do you do when one of its features turns into a headache? We’re talking about the Auto Stop/Start system, and if it’s driving you crazy, you’re not alone.

Imagine this: You’re waiting at a busy intersection, your engine purrs to a stop to save fuel, and you’re ready to go as soon as the light turns green. But what happens next is not what you expected. Your Pathfinder hesitates, goes into neutral, or worst of all, shuts down completely. You’re not alone; many Pathfinder owners have been experiencing the same issue. Let’s dive into what’s happening and how you can turn the tables in your favor.

 

The Auto Stop/Start System Issue

Here’s what some Pathfinder owners have been saying, pouring their frustrations and fears into their stories:

  1. “My Pathfinder stalled at the busiest intersection in town. Not only was it embarrassing, but it put me in a potentially dangerous situation. I had no control over it!” – Sarah, a Pathfinder owner.
  2. “The engine randomly goes into neutral. I’ve had close calls where the car behind me nearly rear-ended me. This isn’t what I signed up for.” – Mark, another frustrated owner.
  3. “The auto stop/start feature is supposed to save fuel, but the risk it poses to my safety isn’t worth it. I’m worried it’s just a matter of time before something terrible happens.” – Lisa, who feels like her car has betrayed her.

 

The Rollercoaster of Emotions

These are not just stories; these are the real-life experiences of people who put their trust in a brand and ended up with anxiety and frustration every time they step into their Pathfinder. Mark, Sarah, and Lisa represent countless others who face similar issues. They feel a range of emotions – embarrassment, anger, fear, and betrayal – every time their Pathfinder falters at an intersection or refuses to respond.

 

Your Rights and How We Can Help

Your new Pathfinder should offer peace of mind, not stress and danger. At the Law Office of Howard A. Gutman, we’re here to help. We understand the rollercoaster of emotions you’ve been on.

When your safety is compromised, and you’re stuck with a vehicle that doesn’t perform as promised, you have rights under the lemon law. The good news is that, in cases like these, car manufacturers and dealers are legally required to compensate all legal expenses. That means you won’t have to pay a dime for our legal services.

 

Why Choose Us?

Our experience in dealing with auto manufacturers is unmatched. We’ve helped countless clients hold manufacturers accountable for their products’ defects, ensuring that our clients receive the compensation they deserve.

 

If you’ve experienced issues with your 2023 Nissan Pathfinder’s auto stop/start system, contact us today at (973) 598-1980 for a free consultation. Let us take on the manufacturers and dealers, so you can get back on the road with confidence. We’re here to make your voice heard and ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Your journey to a safer, more enjoyable driving experience starts with a simple call to us.

 


Sources:

  • 2023 Nissan Pathfinder Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
  • Complaints for 2023 NISSAN PATHFINDER | NHTSA

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