A Toyota dealer has filed a lawsuit against the car company that provides the vast majority of his inventory, alleging Toyota performed subpar repairs in response to a problem with cars stalling out unexpectedly. Rather than replace the inverter on the Prius models in question, the company simply had dealers perform a software update that left many vehicles still under-performing.
In addition to his lawsuit, the dealer is calling for Senate hearings on the matter, insisting that car manufacturers are regularly understating the extent of problems with their vehicles, and attempting to convince owners of their vehicles that minor repairs are enough when major repairs are actually needed.
Recalls can be extremely costly, cutting significantly into a manufacturer’s bottom line, but proper repairs are necessary to save lives and minimize the risk of accidents. Unfortunately, attempting to limit the scope of repairs in response to problems is very common. During the Takata airbag recall, manufacturers first attempted to downplay the extent of the problem, until enough people were injured and killed that it was impossible to ignore the issue any longer.
Dealers and dealerships are usually the primary spokespeople for a brand, so to be sued by a dealer is a clear indication that customers are very displeased. This dealer, by standing up for his customers instead of toeing the party line, did consumers a huge favor. Toyota will have to prove the safety of their current fixes or develop new ways to address the problems with their cars.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an auto accident, it is possible the accident was caused by faulty design or manufacture. Please consult with an experienced attorney about your case. Too many vehicle manufacturers will continue to cut corners until they are held accountable for their actions.