— A Honda infotainment lawsuit alleges the systems freeze and crash in 2018-2019 Honda Odyssey minivans and 2019 Honda Pilot SUVs.
According to the proposed nationwide class action lawsuit, the infotainment systems suffer from navigation, radio and rear-view camera problems. Owners also say the systems are full of audio and video problems and the displays can go blank at any time.
Infotainment systems are known for placing high demands on drivers, with research showing the devices demand the same attention as trying to balance a checkbook while driving. But the plaintiffs claim the Honda infotainment systems are especially distracting because the features fail.
The original Honda infotainment lawsuit was filed nearly a year ago, but an updated and amended suit was filed this month by plaintiffs from 15 states, including Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Washington.
According to the lawsuit, the infotainment system includes at least two screens, one touchscreen located in the center console and a separate screen above the steering wheel. Some vehicles also have rear entertainment systems that allegedly add about $1,000 to the price of the vehicles.
Honda allegedly knew the systems were defective before marketing the vehicles in 2018, then certainly knew about problems once customers started complaining. Yet the automaker used the same infotainment systems in the 2019 Odysseys and 2019 Pilots.
But the lawsuit alleges Honda still hasn't found a reliable way to repair the systems, leaving customers with no choice but to replace the systems.
According to the lawsuit, Honda sent dealerships a tech line article in April 2019 related to 2018-2019 Odysseys with Touring or Elite trims.
"We’re currently investigating an issue that when using CabinWatch and the RES [rear entertainment system] is streaming an application or playing a DVD for 10 minutes or more, a Camera System Problem. Image cannot be displayed. message appears on the Display Audio screen. At the same time, the overhead screen freezes, but the audio keeps playing. So far, we know it’s software related, so don’t replace any components. When we come up with a fix, we’ll release an OTA [over-the-air] software update."
The Honda infotainment lawsuit also mentions customer complaints about the systems from drivers of the Odysseys and Pilots. CarComplaints.com has heard from some of these owners about the disasters they are having with the systems, including from owners of new 2019 Honda Pilots.
"The infotainment system started going bad after owning the vehicle only a month. When you hit a bump the radio went out. I took it back to the dealer and they said they fixed the problem. It worked good for another two months then last week I started getting error messages and the whole info screen went out for minutes at a time. Now I hear static sounds and get messages saying radio out and network problems."
"On 4/5 my screen when dark. It comes and goes. Went to the dealer on 4/6 and the answer was to reset it. They rest it and I lost all my settings. Screen went out again after reset every day several times a day and then reappears. Very annoying. Radio.XM Phone etc all still function with steering wheel controls just can't see anything on the screen. Volume knob is also dead on the screen as is the on off button. Very disappointed now knowing this is a problem with the model."
"I just bought my 2019 Pilot EX-L without NAV and RES, drove it 39 miles to my house with no issues. My wife took it out for a drive around the block approximately 1 mile and now the radio screen just shows the Honda symbol and nothing works on the infotainment screen."
"I have had my 2019 Honda Pilot for 2 weeks and I have major issues with the radio system. The radio shuts on and off. It says unavailable half the time. The screen goes black. When my phone is plugged in the USB and I make a call to talk through the speaker or answer an incoming call there is an ungodly loud buzzing sound that pierces the ears of whomever is on the other side of the phone."
Owners claim that dealerships can replace the systems multiple times but the problems reappear, a sign that Honda has no clue how to properly and permanently repair the systems.
The Honda infotainment lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Western Division - Conti, et al., v. American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
The plaintiffs are represented by Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro, Goldenberg Schneider, LPA, and Niekamp, Weisensell, Mutersbaugh & Mastrantonio, LLP.