A federal class action lawsuit claims that 2005 to 2011 Toyota Scion xB and tC models are plagued with a design defect that causes their rear hatch door handles and panels to break off during normal use. Toyota has allegedly known about the Scion’s defective door handle since 2007, but has failed to disclose it to customers and refuses to recall the vehicles to repair the defect, the class action lawsuit says.
According to the Toyota Scion class action lawsuit, “Toyota knew or should have known that the Class Vehicles are defective, not fit for their intended purpose and unsafe when they are driven within their normal and/or expected range of operation. Nevertheless, Toyota has actively concealed and failed to disclose the Defect to Plaintiffs and the Class Members, both prior to and after the time of purchase.”
The Scion class action lawsuit says that when the defective door handles break, “consumers have been, and will continue to be, forced to deal with an unsafe and illegal situation. First, when the Defective Door Handle breaks, consumers are regularly unable to open their back door, either from the outside or the inside… In addition, the holes left in the rear hatch when the handle breaks allow exhaust fumes to enter into the Vehicle, further creating a safety hazard.”
The Scion class action lawsuit goes on to say that Toyota’s refusal to remedy the problem has forced many consumers to tape or glue the defective Scion door handles bank on their vehicles or purchase expensive replacement parts.
“Indeed, driving around any metropolitan area, it is not uncommon to see numerous [Scion xB and tC models] with the door opening mechanism missing or fastened to the Vehicles via a homemade remedy. Moreover, as a result of Toyota’s abject failure to manufacture and sell a Vehicle that could withstand the routine and normal opening and closing of the rear hatch without breaking, and is concomitant refusal to provide relief to its customers, the Defect has spawned a cottage industry, with third-parties manufacturing parts to try to fill Toyota’s void,” the class action lawsuit says.
The Toyota Scion defective door handle class action lawsuit is brought on behalf of all current and former owners and lessees of a model year 2005-2011 Toyota Scion tC or xB models purchased or leased in the United States. It is seeking damages, interest, restitution and more.
A copy of the Toyota Scion tC and xB Defective Door Handle Class Action Lawsuit can be read here.
The case is Salvatore Amata, et al., v. Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. and Toyota Motor Corporation, Case No. EDCV12-168-VAP (SPx), U.S. District Court, Central District of California
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