Corners should never be cut, because when corners are cut bad things happen and people get hurt. This is especially true in the automotive business, where thousands of pounds of metal can destroy lives in a hurry. Whenever we purchase a vehicle, we trust that the manufacturer has provided all the bells and whistles and safety features listed on the specifications. Unless we are mechanics, and sometimes even if we are, we have no way to know if shortcuts were taken.
Volkswagen’s CEO has resigned after admitting that at least 11 million of their cars were equipped with computers designed to beat emissions tests. Those vehicles will have to be taken to dealerships to have the computers adjusted. This will have a variety of effects, including:
- Impaired gas mileage and acceleration
- Changes to the maintenance schedule, almost certainly requiring more regular maintenance on the catalytic converter and other systems
- Increased likelihood of problems with the fuel systems and the engine
- The possibility of a decreased safety profile
In this instance, the most likely outcome is that people who own these Volkswagens will see higher yearly costs for gas and upkeep. But this case is indicative of a larger problem. Too many car manufacturers are cutting corners and flat-out lying to consumers. It is becoming more and more difficult to trust anything you read about a car’s mileage, features, or safety ratings.
Car accidents are one of the most common causes of severe injury, and unsafe cars are dangerous for everyone on the road. Though Volkswagen is insisting this isn’t a safety issue, it is. These cars would have been running at higher temperatures than drivers expected, increasing the chances of engine failure and system malfunction.
If you or someone you love has been injured or killed in a car crash, it can be difficult to determine where liability lies. Oftentimes car crashes are caused by impaired or distracted driving, but manufacturer error or dishonesty can also be a contributing factor. It is important that a thorough investigation take place into the cause of the crash, and an experienced attorney will have a clearer idea of how to proceed than anyone else you can contact. Please, find a qualified lawyer to help you make sure a proper investigation is held.