— A VW Atlas class action lawsuit alleges 2018-2021 SUVs were sold with defective second-row seat latches that allow the seats to fold down.
The latches are needed to fold down the second-row seats to allow occupants to access the third-row seats. Additionally, the Atlas seats can be folded down to create more storage space.
The Volkswagen Atlas class action lawsuit includes owners who allege the automaker intentionally concealed the alleged latch problems.
According to the Atlas lawsuit, the second-row latching device allegedly fails to secure the seats due to a defective design. During deceleration or in a collision, the Atlas second-row seats can allegedly fail to secure the seats which allows the seats to move forward.
This can allegedly cause second-row occupants to slam into the front seats.
The plaintiffs claim young children and infants are especially susceptible to harm from the alleged latch defects in crash events.
The Atlas class action also alleges the seat latches should last the life of the vehicles and the owner's manuals don't include information about the maintenance of the latches.
The Atlas class action lawsuit was filed by Beatriz Tijerina, David Concepción, Gina Aprile, Theresa Gillespie, Talina Henderson, Diana Ferrara, Lauren Daly, Shane McDonald, Kasem Curovic, Christa Callahan, Erica Upshur, Johnnie Moutra and Jennifer Tolbert.
However, only David Concepción, Diana Ferrara, and Lauren Daly claim dealers failed to repair the seat latches.
The Atlas class action references technical service bulletin (TSB) VIN-4-A-PIN-2019, NHTSA number 10158537, but the bulletin was only a list of various complaints made about Volkswagen models.
Titled, "On-car analysis list from February 26th, 2019 please contact VW Helpline before attempting repair," it says a 2018 VW Atlas "customer states 2nd row seat rattles while driving."
According to the plaintiffs, Volkswagen should offer:
"Injunctive and equitable relief in the form of a comprehensive program to repair or replace the Latching Device in all Class Vehicles, and/or buyback all Class Vehicles, and to fully reimburse and make whole all members of the Class for all costs and economic losses."
The VW Atlas class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey: Tijerina, et al., v. Volkswagen Group of America, Inc., et al.
The plaintiffs are represented by Seeger Weiss LLP, Carella, Byrne, Cecchi, Olstein, Brody & Agnello, P.C., and Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP.