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Chrysler is recalling about 560 model year 2019 Ram 2500 and 3500 trucks, and 3500, 4500 and 5500 Cab Chassis vehicles equipped with diesel engines and fuel lines that may leak fuel into the engine compartments.

A single ignition source could easily cause a fire.

Fiat Chrysler (FCA) opened an investigation in May after a report of leaking fuel lines at the diesel engine supplier, Cummins. The leak was determined to come from a fuel line with incorrectly formed end fittings that didn't properly seal.

Although the leaks consist of "drips," the fuel can still hit engine components and start engine compartment fires.

About 498 Ram trucks are recalled in the U.S. and 63 are recalled in Canada.

The Ram truck recall is expected to begin August 16, 2019, when dealers will replace any affected fuel lines.

Customers with questions should call 800-853-1403. Chrysler's number for this recall is V76.

CarComplaints.com has owner-reported complaints about the trucks.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comChrysler Recalls Ram 2500, 3500, 4500 and 5500 Trucks

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The Center for Auto Safety (CAS) has called on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to keep vehicle safety defect records a minimum of 20 years, 15 more years than the current five-year requirement and 10 years more than the minimum required by Congress.

According to the Center, keeping safety records for five years has been "woefully inadequate and outdated," and NHTSA's plan to extend the period to 10 years isn't much better.

In comments submitted to federal safety regulators, CAS argues retaining safety records for 10 years is only the "bare minimum" at a time of record recalls, injuries and deaths.

The government claims "records most pertinent to a defect investigation will be those generated in the previous ten years because those are the records more likely to show an emerging defect trend.”

But the Center says NHTSA seems to ignore the value of records beyond 10 years old which have led to important recalls and investigations, especially concerning design defects.

CAS says a defect investigation should include design defects, something that relies on documents possibly created years before a vehicle is sold to the public. In addition, documents related to design problems could possibly be produced many years before a vehicle is manufactured, making the "current proposal untenable."

In its comments to the government, the Center for Auto Safety provides examples by using real-life deadly defects related to airbag manufacturer Takata and automaker General Motors.

"For example, under a 10-year record retention policy, General Motors could have tossed out records related to the detent plunger change that resulted in hundreds of ignition switch related deaths and injuries, and Takata could have destroyed all records related to the design of exploding airbag inflators."

If those two examples aren't proof enough of needing to retain records longer than 10 years, CAS also references current government actions related to safety defects.

"Moreover, 44% of NHTSA’s current 43 active Defect Petitions, Preliminary Evaluations, Engineering Analysis investigations, involve vehicles or equipment that began production more than 10 years ago."

The Center says the proposed 10-year limit will give automakers an incentive to “run out the clock” concerning the reporting of safety defects.

By requiring less information than is needed to enforce safety regulations, the Center claims NHTSA is placing corporations worth billions of dollars above the safety of the public.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comFeds Should Retain Safety Defect Records for 20 Years

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A Hyundai and Kia airbag lawsuit alleges both automakers, in addition to parts manufacturer ZF TRW, are guilty of installing defective airbag control units in these models.

  • 2012-2016 Kia Optima Hybrid
  • 2013 Kia Forte
  • 2013 Kia Forte Koup
  • 2013-2019 Kia Optima
  • 2013-2019 Hyundai Sonata
  • 2013-2019 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
  • 2014 Kia Sedona

According to the plaintiff, the airbag problem is especially dangerous because it occurs only when a crash occurs, the very time an airbag is necessary. The allegedly defective component is the integrated circuit of the airbag control unit that can suffer from electrical overstress.

The problem of overstress is allegedly caused by the electrical signals from the airbag sensors which prevents the airbags from deploying. The proposed class action lawsuit also alleges the seat belt pretensioners will fail at the same time the airbags fail.

Hyundai and Kia allegedly knew about the airbag problems for years before finally letting customers know. The plaintiff claims ZF TRW and both automakers investigated airbag failures between 2011 and 2015 but waited until 2015 to inform the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Hyundai and Kia also allegedly downplayed the serious defects even when vehicles were finally recalled in 2018.

According to NHTSA, airbag failures killed four people and injured six by March 2018 when federal safety regulators opened an investigation into failures in 2011 Hyundai Sonatas and 2012-2013 Kia Fortes.

Tennessee plaintiff Jennifer Johnson owns a 2014 Hyundai Sonata she purchased in July 2015 from a Kia dealership. Although she doesn't claim the vehicle has suffered airbag problems, Johnson says if she would have known about the airbag control units she wouldn't have purchased the Sonata.

The plaintiff says Hyundai and Kia vehicles are worth less than they should be because of the airbag control unit problems, and allegedly none of the vehicles were fit for ordinary use by consumers when the vehicles were sold. In addition, Hyundai and Kia continued to profit from selling the vehicles by concealing the true nature of the problems.

By claiming the automakers knew of airbag problems, the plaintiff points to an incident in August 2011 when a Kia Forte airbag failed in a Chinese crash. An investigation conducted with ZF-TRW allegedly showed the airbag control unit told the airbags not to deploy.

Then in February 2012, Hyundai learned of a crash of a 2011 Hyundai Sonata with airbags that failed to deploy. ZF-TRW allegedly determined the airbag control unit had been damaged by an electrical overstress condition.

Both Hyundai and Kia issued recalls due to airbag control units that were susceptible to electrical overstress that occurred during crash impacts. But the lawsuit alleges Hyundai and Kia failed to recall all the affected vehicles, making owners believe similar vehicles were safe.

The Hyundai and Kia airbag lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Southern Division - Johnson, et al., v. Hyundai Motor America, Inc., et al.

The plaintiff is represented by Keller Rohrback.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comHyundai and Kia Airbag Lawsuit Says Airbag Control Units Fail

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A Nissan Titan recall has been ordered to repair problems with alternator harnesses that could cause electrical short circuits and fires, or what Nissan calls, "thermal incidents."

More than 101,700 model year 2017-2019 Titan trucks may have harnesses that may have been damaged when the engines were installed.

When the VK56 engines were lowered into place, the alternator harnesses may have made contact with the edges of the metal frame brackets. Nissan says this could cause the harnesses to pull away from their normal routing paths.

The alternator harnesses have shields, but the wiring can become damaged if the harnesses get trapped against the brackets.

If wiring problems occur a driver will likely notice electrical issues such as flickering interior lights or the radio working only part of the time. This can prevent the battery from charging, leading to a discharged battery that may fail while in traffic.

Once the battery voltage has dropped enough to trigger electrical problems, the truck will operate at reduced power and the engine may stall. But this is minor compared to the risk of engine compartment fires, although Nissan says it's a rare event.

More than 91,300 of the Titan trucks are in the U.S. and about 10,400 are in Canada.

The Nissan Titan recall is expected to begin July 23, 2019, when dealerships will inspect the alternator harnesses to make sure they are routed correctly and aren't damaged.

Based on what technicians find, it's possible the harnesses will be clipped or replaced.

Nissan Titan truck owners with questions should call 800-867-7669.

CarComplaints.com has owner-reported complaints about Nissan Titan trucks and many other Nissan vehicles.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comNissan Recalls Titan Trucks Due To Alternator Wire Harnesses

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Ram fuel filler neck problems have caused a proposed class action lawsuit that alleges 2015-2019 Ram trucks have defective filler necks that cause gas nozzles to lodge in the openings of the fuel tanks.

This allegedly causes drivers to forcefully remove the gas nozzles from the filler necks or contact third-party assistance to dislodge the nozzles.

Simply put, the filler neck is the tube that runs from the exterior of the truck to the interior of the gas tank.

Plaintiff, Kelly Kingston says he purchased a 2016 Ram truck in California and attempted to refuel his truck at gas stations where he previously had no refueling issues with other vehicles. However, the same fuel nozzles he used with other vehicles lodged in his Ram fuel filler neck.

The plaintiff claims there have been times he has spent more than 20 minutes attempting to dislodge a nozzle from his truck and one time he had to contact AAA and wait two hours for assistance.

Kingston also says he is frequently sprayed or covered in gasoline because of fighting to remove stuck gas nozzles, a problem he says may have prevented him from buying the truck if he would have known about the filler necks.

Additionally, the angle of the Ram filler neck triggers the automatic shutoff function of a fuel pump which causes the pump to stop pumping every few seconds.

Fiat Chrysler has allegedly known about the filler neck problems on Ram trucks since at least 2015 but has done nothing to fix the alleged problems. In addition, Ram buyers don't learn of the problems until after they try to fill the tanks.

The allegedly problematic fuel filler neck (part number 68400788AA) is steeply-angled, but some Ram owners say they erased the problems by replacing the necks with different necks (part number 68448220AA) that aren't as angled.

According to the plaintiff, there is no excuse for Chrysler to ignore the alleged problems for such a simple fix, leaving the fix to Ram owners who must pay their own money to make repairs.

The Ram fuel filler neck class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California - Kingston, et al., v. FCA US LLC.

The plaintiff is represented by Ahdoot & Wolfson.

Check out what owners say about their Ram trucks.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comRam Fuel Filler Neck Problems Cause Class Action Lawsuit

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The court battle between Toyota and California dealership owner Roger Hogan has ended with a Santa Ana jury finding the automaker liable for $15.8 million for interfering with the contract between Hogan and Toyota.

The lawsuit alleges Hogan had been in business with Toyota nearly 40 years when he created a recall software program called Autovation that could be used by Toyota dealers. The software allegedly helped dealerships find customers who owned vehicles that had been recalled but never repaired.

Hogan said he created the software after Toyota's massive problems concerning unintended acceleration, something the automaker handled by sending recall notices to each customer. Toyota faced massive costs related to problems with sudden acceleration events and was fined more than $1 billion over sticky accelerator pedals and floor mats that interfered with pedals.

Hogan alleges hundreds of thousands of vehicle owners didn't know their vehicles had been recalled, a problem the Autovation software could remedy. Hogan argued Toyota's recall system was broken and made it difficult for dealerships to identify vehicles with unrepaired (open) recalls.

According to the lawsuit, the software created by Hogan greatly increased the number of vehicles that were repaired under recall, but this came at a price to Toyota. The lawsuit alleges Toyota didn't want to spend millions of dollars to repair all the vehicles the Autovation software identified, so the automaker put an end to the program and allegedly set out to destroy Hogan's dealerships.

In particular, Toyota allegedly told Hogan to create a plan to turn the dealerships over to new owners, then rejected the idea of handing the business to Hogan's sons.

The lawsuit also alleges Toyota required multiple expensive actions by Hogan and his dealerships, but it was all an effort to convince him to shut down the dealerships. According to Hogan, Toyota cost him millions of dollars in lost revenue, an argument the jury agreed to support, at least partially.

Hogan sued for $100 million, but the jury said the $15.8 million was fair, concluding Toyota wouldn't have to pay punitive damages because the automaker didn't intend to deceive the dealerships by concealing material facts.

The jury also didn't buy accusations Toyota committed fraud, but did find evidence that Mr. Hogan wasn't exactly squeaky clean in the matter because he acted with "unclean hands." That finding caused the jury to knock $2.3 million off the verdict.

Toyota says it respects the decision by the jury, but the automaker believes the evidence shows it followed its contractual obligations to Hogan and his Claremont and San Juan Capistrano dealerships.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comToyota To Pay $15.8 Million in California Dealership Lawsuit

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Ford Fiesta and Focus transmission problems were allegedly covered up by Ford as the automaker blamed customers for the issues while knowing the PowerShift transmissions were defective.

In a report from the Detroit Free Press, internal documents prove Ford knew the transmissions required expensive changes to fix the problems, yet each year the automaker ignored reality to pad its Fiesta and Focus profit margins.

Ford's PowerShift transmissions are supposed to be the perfect combination of manual and automatic transmissions. A manual transmission uses a clutch controlled by the driver when shifting gears, a process known as more fuel efficient and quicker than an automatic transmission.

An automatic uses a torque converter filled with fluid to power the transmission from the engine. But Ford marketed the dual-clutch PowerShift transmissions as providing the fuel economy of a manual transmission with the convenience of an automatic.

Although similar transmissions use clutches kept wet by oil, Ford's Fiesta and Focus transmissions use dry clutches that don't have oil pumps. According to hundreds of lawsuits, customers complain the dry clutch plates and other components suffer from premature wear and cause the transmissions to slip, jerk and finally fail.

The report also indicates Ford's own lawyers were worried in 2008 about safety issues related to the transmissions and how problems could be multiplied by using the transmissions in high-volume low-priced Fiestas and Focus cars.

According to the Free Press report, the 2011 Ford Fiesta allegedly suffered so many problems that 115 software changes were made before the cars were ever sold to the public. According to internal Ford documents, transmission problems continued to increase as the launch date for the Fiesta neared.

However, Ford noted that transmission alternatives in the low-profit low-cost Fiesta would add too much additional costs and decrease fuel economy.

The Free Press report says a former Ford engineer admitted the automaker didn't have a problem jumping on transmission problems that popped up on high-profit models, taking whatever actions were needed to quickly fix the issues. But the engineer said the PowerShift transmission problems were treated the exact opposite and customer complaints were typically ignored.

Ford has never issued a recall for the PowerShift transmission problems even though customer complaints were filed within months of the launch of the 2011 Fiesta.

In the midst of questions about the reliability of the DPS6 transmissions, documents show Ford argued even if the transmissions caused certain problems, the vehicles were safe and customers had nothing to worry about. Internal documents show Ford didn't believe there were serious safety problems because steering and power continued to function even if the transmissions unintentionally shifted into NEUTRAL.

But this belief contradicted customers who claimed their Fiesta or Focus vehicles were in collisions caused by vehicles that suddenly lost motive power. Many customers reported their vehicles were struck from behind when the transmissions malfunctioned, then those customers were told they didn't know how to properly drive the vehicles.

In one internal email, faulty PowerShift transmissions were blamed for warranty expenses of $700 million, an amount Ford said needed to be cut because of the damage to profit margins. Other internal emails show Ford dealers complained to the manufacturer about a neverending supply of customers complaining about the transmissions.

Documents indicate the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration contacted Ford in 2014 and asked about the transmission complaints. Ford allegedly responded by saying the problems occurred as the cars got older, a claim contradicted by Ford telling customers the transmissions were new and just needed to be "broken in."

In addition to thousands of customer complaints, at least 50 injuries are allegedly related to the transmission problems even though the automaker has always said the cars and their transmissions were safe.

The damage to Ford's corporate checkbook was mentioned in an internal document that estimated Ford would lose $3 billion by 2020 due to quality-related issues with the transmissions.

And Ford also warned investors about the possible financial consequences of hundreds of lawsuits filed about the transmissions and the possibility of civil penalties and vehicle buyback costs.

Ford responded to the Free Press report by claiming choices about the transmissions were based on what was best for customers.

Read about some of the multiple legal actions taken against Ford over the PowerShift transmissions.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comFord Allegedly Knew About Defective Fiesta and Focus Transmissions

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A Toyota Prius c recall will require dealerships to fix problems with the DC-DC converters that can cause the hybrid systems to shut down. The 2018-2019 Prius c DC-DC converter may fail and cause a failure of the battery to receive power from the converter.

The problem only affects vehicles equipped with DC-DC converters which use circuit boards with incorrect specifications.

The automaker says about 10 percent of the cars may develop solder separations due to improper maintenance of specific pallets and pins used for the circuit boards.

Toyota says the soldering of a specific transistor to the circuit board in the DC-DC converter could be faulty and may separate after temperature cycling of the solder.

The auxiliary battery may no longer receive power from the DC-DC converter, causing warning lights to illuminate, audible chimes and messages to display on the instrument panel.

If the condition continues the hybrid system will shut down and prevent the car from moving forward. This creates a dangerous situation for anyone driving highway speeds.

About 464 cars are recalled in the U.S. and the recall affects 284 Prius c cars in Canada, but Toyota says this recall is distinct from recalls involving Prius inverters.

The 2018-2019 Prius c recall is expected to begin August 12, 2019, when dealerships will replace the DC-DC converters.

Prius c owners with questions should call 888-270-9371. Toyota's number for this recall is K0K.

CarComplaints.com has owner-reported complaints about the Toyota Prius, Prius c, Prius Plug-in, Prius Prime and Toyota Prius v.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comToyota Prius c Recall Issued Over DC-DC Converters

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A Mazda water pump lawsuit alleges 2007-2016 Mazda CX-9 and 2009-2013 Mazda6 vehicles are equipped with pumps that suddenly fail and cause catastrophic engine failures.

The proposed class action lawsuit alleges the vehicles lose engine power and fail to accelerate and maintain speed. The vehicles also allegedly can't readily control steering and cannot fully engage the brakes.

The plaintiffs claim the vehicles are at risk of serious crashes because Mazda has failed to disclose the alleged water pump defects.

Michigan resident Terry Sonneveldt, one of 15 named plaintiffs, purchased a used 2012 Mazda CX-9 in October 2018, but in April 2019 his vehicle suffered catastrophic engine failure without warning. The plaintiff says the engine problem was caused by the water pump, something that cost him more than $5,000 to repair.

The Mazda CX-9 and Mazda6 vehicles are equipped with MZI Cyclone engines introduced by Mazda in 2007. According to the lawsuit, the Cyclone engine has an internal chain-driven water pump which means the timing chain is connected to the water pump and provides the power the water pump needs to circulate coolant through the engine.

According to the water pump lawsuit, the Cyclone engines are installed in hundreds of thousands of Mazda CX-9 and Mazda6 vehicles, all at risk of coolant leaking into the timing chains, crankcases and oil pans.

The water pump inside the engine is located behind the timing chain cover and allegedly hidden from the view of mechanics servicing the vehicles.

The plaintiffs say even though people may not be able to see it, coolant can leak from the water pump into the oil pan and other engine components and mix with engine oil. This mixture of oil and coolant then circulates through the engine, causing the engine failures referenced by the plaintiffs.

The Mazda water pump lawsuit also alleges the automaker worked with Ford concerning the design, engineering and testing of the Cyclone engines which are known as Duratec engines installed in millions of Ford vehicles. The plaintiffs claim Mazda must have known about the water pump problems Ford customers experienced in their vehicles.

However, Mazda still refuses to recall the affected vehicles or create permanent repairs for vehicle owners. In addition, Mazda hasn't compensated customers for water pump and engine replacements.

Mazda allegedly should have known the water pumps would likely fail outside the warranty periods and leave customers no choice but to pay thousands of dollars for repairs. Because of the location of the water pump, the lawsuit alleges just replacing the part can cost more than $1,500, but replacing a damaged engine can cost more than $10,000.

Just to replace the water pump the job involves removal of the timing chain, guides and cover, a job that can take 12 to 14 hours to complete.

The plaintiffs claim Mazda tells technicians to remove the oil pan drain plug and line the cylinder block with plastic sheeting to prevent coolant from penetrating or accumulating in the oil pan.

According to the plaintiffs, the owner's manual wrongly indicates the water pump doesn't need serviced or replaced during at least the first 120,000 miles driving.

The Mazda water pump class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California - Sonneveldt, et al. v. Mazda Motor of America, Inc., et al.

The plaintiffs are represented by Kiesel Law, Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, The Miller Law Firm, Keil & Goodson, and the Edwards Firm.

Read complaints sent to CarComplaints.com about the Mazda vehicles named in the water pump lawsuit.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comMazda Water Pump Lawsuit Says Failures Cause Engine Damage

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More than 770 model year 2016-2017 Mercedes-Benz AMG GT S cars may have driveshafts that separate while driving.

About 660 vehicles are recalled in the U.S. and 115 are recalled in Canada. Mercedes says the bonding between the carbon-fiber driveshafts and the engine/transmission flanges may not be strong enough.

Mercedes-Benz says the recall is expected to begin August 13, 2019. Dealerships will need to replace the driveshafts, including the flanges.

AMG GT S owners may call the automaker at 800-367-6372.

SOURCE: CarComplaints.comMercedes-Benz AMG GT S Cars Recalled to Replace Driveshafts

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