On Tuesday, General Motors was hit with a proposed class action claiming that its 2010-2011 Chevrolet Camaros contain a defect that doesn’t allow the front, passenger-side airbags to deploy when they should.
According to the complaint, many Camaro owners have reported that the vehicles’ airbag warning lights will switch on and off when a passenger is in the car, signifying that the passenger’s airbag could potentially fail to deploy in a crash. The alleged defect is a tricky one, as drivers could easily fail to understand what the warning lights mean or miss them turning on altogether. Drivers who did notice and had the malfunctioning sensors fixed ended up paying up to $700 in out-of-pocket repairs – and the lawsuit is looking to compensate drivers for those repairs.
That isn’t the only thing the plaintiffs take issue with though. The three named plaintiffs are alleging that GM knew (as evidenced by GM-issued Technical Service Bulletins and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration complaints) its vehicles weren’t living up to safety standards. There are just over 17 pages of NHTSA-filed complaints featured in the complaint – and yet GM never issued a recall to fix the problem or even attempted to notify its customers about the issue, according to the suit. Instead, GM, the suit claims, actively tried to hide the defect.
The suit is looking to certify a nationwide class of 2010-2011 Camaro owners. On behalf of the proposed class, the plaintiffs are looking to force GM to announce the defect, offer free repairs, extend the vehicles’ airbag system warranties, and compensate Camaro owners for damages.