Consumers are beginning to see the results of a recent decision by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration allowing used car dealers to offer defective vehicles and label them as safe. CarMax, the leading used car outlet in the United States has recently taken advantage of this change in the law, and consumers relying on CarMax's reputation may be the ones to suffer. An investigation into the CarMax inventory reveals thousands of cars that were included in past auto defect class actions.
The investigation surveyed the cars for sale at eight dealerships in three states, including California. Among the nearly 1,700 cars for sale, 27 percent of them had unrepaired defects that had resulted in recalls on the vehicles. This percentage was double the defects found in a similar survey just two years ago. While most of the vehicles had options for repairing the problems, 41 did not, meaning a consumer purchasing the car from CarMax would have no recourse for fixing the potentially dangerous defect.
CarMax, the largest used car outlet in the country, sells over 600,00 vehicles a year, and consumers have grown to trust its "Quality Certified" rating on used cars. However, some of the defects in the certified cars CarMax currently offers include deadly Takata airbags and GM ignition switches. While CarMax defends the sale of defective vehicles by saying its dealers make full disclosures of the problems, many feel this is not enough protection for consumers and their families. Nevertheless, since only new-car dealers can repair recalled defects, many used car dealers have been left with a glut of cars they cannot fix.
Auto defect class actions are one way in which consumers can bring attention to dangerous engineering flaws in vehicles. By bringing class action suits against a large industry, California consumers can hope to reclaim damages for injuries suffered because of defective products. An attorney with experience in class actions for defective autos can provide assistance and guidance for those seeking compensation.
Source: autoweek.com, "Report: More than a quarter of CarMax vehicles need recall repairs", Jesse Snyder, Sept. 29, 2017