The owners of more than 30,000 Kia Telluride sport utility vehicles in the United States were recently notified that their cars are being recalled. The problem? Someone installed the wrong seatbelts.
“The affected seat belt assemblies for the driver seat are non-U.S. specification seat belt assemblies,” Kia Motors America said in a recent letter to owners of the recalled vehicles. The problem raises safety concerns for all passengers, especially children.
“The affected front passenger, second and third row seat belt assemblies are not equipped with an automatic locking retractor (ALR) feature and do not comply with FMVSS 208, Occupant crash protection,” the company said in the letter. “If a non-ALR seat belt is used to secure a child seat in the front passenger, second or third row seats, it may not tightly secure a child restraint system, increasing the risk of injury to a child seat occupant in a crash.”
The recall covers more than 30,000 2020 Telluride models. The cars were mistakenly loaded with seat belts assemblies meant for the Middle East market, according to CNET. United States law requires belts to be equipped with the automatic locking retractor feature.
Kia began sending letters to owners at the end of August. The company said it will inspect vehicles and replace seat belts free of charge.
How the California Lemon Law Protects Car Owners
Kia’s seat belt snafu is an unfortunately common occurrence. It seems like every week there is news of at least one car company calling back thousands of vehicles because of some defect that can pose a serious safety hazard to everyone on the road.
The good news for car owners and lessors in the Golden State is that the California lemon law offers some important protections. It requires car manufacturers to repair malfunctioning vehicles while they are under warranty and to buy cars back that cannot be fixed. The law also allows a manufacturer to offer to replace the vehicle, but it is the owner or lessor’s decision whether to take that deal.
The California lemon law also puts a car manufacturer on the hook for any legal fees that an owner or lessor incurs in enforcing their rights.
Speak With a California Lemon Law Attorney
If you’re a California car owner who’s stuck with a lemon, there are certain steps that you need to take to ensure that you’re covered by the state law. The California Lemon Law lawyers at the Bickel Law Firm have decades of combined legal experience and have represented hundreds of clients in defective vehicle cases across the state. We can help you understand your rights and options under the law.
Our lawyers work aggressively to resolve these cases for the people that we represent. We also take the time to understand each individual client’s unique personal situation and craft a personalized approach that meets their needs.
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.