February 9, 2012
Jonathan D. Selbin of the national plaintiffs’ law firm Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, announced that two owners of Honda vehicles today filed a class action lawsuit against American Honda Motor Company, Inc. ("Honda") for manufacturing and selling vehicles with allegedly defective window mechanisms. The complaint, filed in federal court in Los Angeles, charges that the Honda window defect poses a safety hazard to drivers and passengers nationwide.
The vehicles at issue include the Honda Odyssey, Honda Pilot, Honda Element, Honda Accord, Honda CR-V, Honda Civic, and Acura MDX from model years 1994 to 2007. Windows in these vehicles allegedly can, without warning, drop into the door frame and break or become permanently stuck in the fully-open position.
"The right passenger side window fell into the door of my 2002 Honda Odyssey LX in September 2011," stated plaintiff Phyllis Grodzitsky, a resident of San Diego, California. "It was a startling, loud sound that jolted me. I lost use of my Odyssey for two days and it cost over $400 to fix the window."
"I made a complaint to Honda," Grodzitsky added. "Honda said there is no recall for the window systems on my vehicle. I feel that arrogance by a large corporation in response to a safety issue is unacceptable in this day and age."
Plaintiff Jeremy Bordelon of Chattanooga, Tennessee, commented, "Had I known I would be faced with serial replacements of a substandard part, I would not have bought a Honda Element. Both of our windows failed during normal driving – one failed when we were at a complete stop, in fact! I have had to pay to fix my Element twice and am concerned that I will have to keep fixing it. That’s not what I would want from any car, much less one from a brand that sells itself on its quality and reliability."
"Honda has a duty to manufacture and sell safe vehicles, and to fix or pay for safety defects in its vehicles," Selbin stated. "Instead, Honda has refused to acknowledge any responsibility for the alleged defect, and forced its customers to pay for the repairs out their own pockets."
"Not only did our clients complain to Honda about their failures at the time, but before we filed this lawsuit we reached out to and notified Honda of the problem and asked them to resolve it for everyone who has the vehicles," Selbin added. "Honda never responded."
The Alleged Honda Window Defect Explained
The side windows in the Honda vehicles that are the subject of the complaint move up and down by a device mounted inside the door frame known as a "window regulator." Within this device are a set of cables threaded through pulleys and powered by an electric motor. The cable ends are fixed with a piece of plastic that keeps the cables from being pulled out of place as tension is applied to the cables by the window motor.
The complaint charges that expert analysis has determined that the plastic pieces holding the cable ends in place are weak and defective and break under normal operating conditions, causing the window regulator to fail. When the window regulator fails, the side window becomes inoperable and is often permanently stuck in the fully-open position, endangering occupants.
The complaint further alleges that Honda knew that the fix it made available to consumers – replacing the failed part with a new part of the same defective design – results in repeated window regulator failures on the same vehicle, and yet Honda failed to reimburse Honda owners for the costs of repeatedly replacing the failed window regulators. Further, the complaint charges that Honda has failed to provide a permanent remedy to the window regulator defect.
Legal Resources For Honda Owners
The proposed class consists of all persons nationwide who purchased or leased certain 1994 to 2007 Honda vehicles that are equipped with the allegedly faulty window regulators.
If you would like further information about this lawsuit, or wish to report your experience with a faulty window mechanism on your Honda vehicle, please visit our case page on the Honda alleged window defect. Lieff Cabraser will review your complaint against Honda without charge or obligation.
Members of the media that wish to obtain a copy of the complaint may contact Brenna Van Norman of Lieff Cabraser at email@example.com.
About Lieff Cabraser
With offices in San Francisco, New York, and Nashville, Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, is one of the nation’s premier plaintiffs’ law firms. On behalf of consumers nationwide, Lieff Cabraser has successfully litigated hundreds of class action lawsuits in federal and state courts, including dozens of cases requiring manufacturers to remedy a defect, extend warranties, and refund to consumers the cost of repairing the defective product.
Working with co-counsel, we have achieved judgments and settlements that have recovered more than $2 billion in cash in these cases, as well as other valuable relief such as product fixes and extended warranties.
Jonathan D. Selbin
Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP