General Motors Wants Exemption From Takata Airbag Recall
Already 41.6 million vehicles have been recalled over faulty Takata airbags in the six years since reports started popping up of people being injured or killed in accidents involving the malfunctioning safety devices. Yet, we continue to see problems related to the airbags, which can explode and send shrapnel hurtling into the air when deployed.
In January, there were reports of recycled Takata airbags finding their way into cars that were not part of the recalls. Then came March, when Honda announced it was recalling some 1.1 million cars that were part of previous recalls over concerns that they could still explode if deployed during a crash.
Now, General Motors is in the news because the American automaker wants regulators to continue to exempt some 6 million GM vehicles from ongoing Takata recalls. The company says Takata airbag inflators in GMT900 cars were uniquely designed and do not pose the same risks that the faulty versions included in other automobiles.
“GM states that the covered passenger inflators are not used by any other original equipment manufacturer and, further, that the covered inflators have a number of unique design features that influence burn rates and internal ballistic dynamics, including greater vent-area-to-propellant-mass ratios, steel end caps, and thinner propellant wafers,” the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration explained in a summary of the petition. “GM also states that the physical environment of the GMT900 vehicles better protects the covered passenger inflators from temperature cycling that can lead to propellant degradation and, ultimately, inflator rupture.”
GMT900 vehicles include a wide range of general motors models, such as certain Chevrolet Silverados, Tahoes, Suburbans, Avalanches, and GMC Sierras and Yukons. Some Cadillac Escalade models are also covered by the exemption request.
This marks the fourth year in a row that GM has sought an exemption for the covered vehicles.
How the California Lemon Law Works
Regardless of whether you agree with GM about whether the cars should be exempt from the Takata recall, there is no question about the lasting damage that problems with the Japanese airbags have caused. That is not to mention the spotlight it has shined on the various defective parts that can make cars unsafe for everyone on the road.
The California lemon law offers some important basic legal protections to car buyers and lessors in the Golden State. The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act, as it is officially called, requires car manufacturers to buy back certain vehicles that the manufacturer cannot or refuses to repair while under warranty. That includes compensating the owner or lessor for the purchase price and financing costs, as well as rental car and other related expenses. The carmaker is also on the hook for any legal expenses that an owner or lessor incurs while enforcing their rights under the lemon law.
There is no set number of repair attempts that a car manufacturer must make before the law kicks in. Instead, it depends on the specific circumstances.
How Our California Lemon Law Attorneys Can Help You
The California lemon law attorneys at the Bickel Law Firm have represented hundreds of clients in defective vehicle cases in Southern California and across the state.
Our offices are conveniently located in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco. Call us at (888) 800-1983 or contact us online to speak with an attorney.