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Toyota faces auto defect class actions for moldy smell

Purchasing a new vehicle is a decision that few people make on a whim. The price is considerable, and the monthly payments can tip a carefully balanced budget. However, there is nothing like releasing the worry by trading in an unpredictable used car. Additionally, there are few who do not love a new car smell. Unfortunately for some owners of new vehicles, their purchases resulted in one of several auto defect class actions.

Air conditioning in a new car must be of highest standards, especially for those who live in warmer states like California. However, one consumer who recently purchased a Toyota Camry discovered that cranking his air conditioning may have cooled off the car, but it also filled it with a foul odor. He described the odor as funky and old, like mildew. Opening vents and running the heat did nothing to alleviate the smell.

California leads the nation in car recalls

A vehicle recall informs a car owner of a safety related issue that exists within their car. Attending to this fix in a timely manner is important. When the work is done quickly, it can keep the roads safe for everyone.

There are two benefits to a car recall. It is free for the owner of the car and it keeps a vehicle safe. The reality is, despite these benefits, Los Angles drivers are not getting their recall work done. A recent report shows a surprising number of Los Angles vehicles that carry the general public need to be recalled.

Woman seeks class action status re defective headrests

Car owners may take for granted some of the safety features in their vehicles because they may not seem like safety features at all. In fact, the headrest in a vehicle may seem more of a comfort than a safety device. However, the position of the headrest prevents the driver or passenger's head from snapping back during a collision, causing whiplash or more serious neck injuries. California owners of cars manufactured by Fiat Chrysler may be interested in knowing how one woman is seeking class action status of her lawsuit regarding defective headrests.

Apparently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has logged at least 94 complaints of malfunctioning headrests in Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep vehicles. The computerized headrests are supposed to spring forward in a collision, but the malfunctioning headrests pop forward when no accident has occurred. Fifteen people have suffered injuries, including drivers and passengers.

Mercedes violated lemon law, judge rules

California consumers have certain protections when they purchase a new vehicle. The lemon law is one of those protections. This law allows a car owner a refund or replacement vehicle if a new vehicle has defects that cannot be repaired. In some cases, consumers need to fight for their rights under this law.

One woman in another state leased a new model Mercedes in Sept. 2013. The vehicle soon began having trouble with its transmission, resulting in numerous trips to the dealership for repairs. After 10 months of frustration and no resolution to the transmission issues, the woman asked for a refund, which the state's lemon law allows.

Dealer fraud begins at auction houses

When trading in one vehicle to buy a newer one, a California car owner will typically clean it thoroughly, make minor repairs and try to present it to the dealer in the most attractive condition possible. However, after trading in a car, the previous owner will rarely see his or her old vehicle on the same car lot. In fact, the peculiar way in which car dealers obtain their inventory provides a perfect cover for examples of dealer fraud.

Used car dealers frequently buy the cars they sell from wholesale auction houses. Those who have experience in used vehicle transactions keep tabs on where certain makes and models sell best, and they send those vehicles to that location. Pickups, for example, sell better in rural areas, but sports cars are in demand in big cities.

Changes occur after auto defect class actions

When a consumer is injured by a product or service, he or she may feel there is little to do about it. However, if several consumers suffer injuries from a similar problem, they may unite to seek compensation for their damages. This is a particularly effective course of action when dealing with the automotive industry. Recent auto defect class actions have brought serious dangers to the attention of the public and have prompted auto manufacturers to take action to improve the safety of their vehicles.

A California judge recently ruled in favor of plaintiffs, allowing them to proceed with action against Fiat Chrysler, who attempted to have the lawsuit dismissed. The lawsuit alleges that the car company knew about a serious defect in the powertrain control module in one of their vehicle models but kept the information from the public. The defect in the vehicle causes it to stall, sometimes while traveling at 60 mph.

When new vehicles are not reliable, the lemon law helps

California consumers in the market for a car may have definite reasons for choosing a new car over a pre-owned vehicle. While used cars may be cheaper up front, many car owners do not want to deal with the cost and inconvenience of frequent repairs that often go hand-in-hand with owning a used vehicle. Recent reports show that the purchase of a new vehicle does not always result in carefree ownership, and an owner of a new car may have to call upon the state's lemon law for support.

A recent Consumer Reports survey shows that about half of drivers in the market for a vehicle have specific things in mind. These car buyers are looking for a vehicle that will spare them the cost and inconvenience of repairs and maintenance, relieve them of the worry of breaking down, and offer a warranty. This wish list leads many to explore new car options over used cars. However, many new cars come with their own sets of problems, especially when they are in the early years of production.

Report car problems, ignite a life-saving recall

Purchasing a vehicle may represent an exciting time in your life. Perhaps you are buying from an expensive brand you have coveted since you could drive, or perhaps you require a larger car for your growing family. In any circumstance, you hold the right to feel safe in your vehicle.

Cars go through extensive testing to become available in the market, but some models sneak past minor qualifications, resulting in major impacts. Thousands of recalls occur every year, but how are problems discovered and reported?

Tips to avoid becoming a victim of dealer fraud

Selling vehicles is a difficult job, especially now that consumers can use the internet to research what they want and even make purchases online. While many reputable car salespeople in California find creative and practical ways to entice people to make a purchase, others use more underhanded tactics. Consumers on the hunt for a new or used vehicle would benefit from knowing some common examples of dealer fraud and how to avoid getting ripped off at the car lot.

One of the first factors a car shopper looks for is low mileage. A consumer may be willing to pay more for a car with lower mileage than one of the same make and model with a higher odometer reading. Deceptive car dealers have numerous ways to reverse the odometer to read a lower mileage, so consumers would be wise to check the original title and any service records on the vehicle. Carfax reports are not always updated in a timely manner, so it is always a good idea to get the opinion of a trusted independent mechanic.

Auto defect class actions may result from auto fires

It is not unusual for auto manufacturers to keep from the public information about potential dangers in their vehicles. After all, if California consumers learned that a defect or malfunction in a particular make or model is a threat to their safety, the reputation of the company will certainly suffer. When enough car owners seek legal help, they may combine their complaints into auto defect class actions so that more plaintiffs may seek relief in a single case.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recently received information that over 300 Kia and Hyundai owners filed complaints with the Center for Auto Safety. The CAS has petitioned the NHTSA, asking the agency to investigate reports that certain models are experiencing fires even though they have not been involved in accidents. In fact, one Sonata owner returned to his car after shopping to find it overcome with flames resulting from an electrical short.

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